Back row duo Stephen Ferris and Nick Williams are still in contention to face Glasgow Warriors this Friday after being named in Mark Anscombe’s provisional 28 man squad (8.00pm kick off).
The pair missed the 41-17 win over Castres at the weekend but Ulster are hopeful that they will be fit for this Heineken Cup Pool 4 clash at Scotstoun.
Ferris is responding well to treatment on his back, while Williams (ribs) will also be given as much time as possible to prove his fitness.
Flyhalf Niall O’Connor is included in the preliminary squad after his impressive performance for the Ulster Ravens in the win over Bridgend on Saturday.
Roger Wilson played 40 minutes against the Welsh outfit, but he will not be rushed back into action with the senior side.
Robbie Diack and Declan Fitzpatrick have returned to training this week following injuries but will not be considered for this weekend.
FORWARDS: Rory Best, Rob Herring, Nigel Brady, Callum Black, John Afoa, Tom Court, Adam Macklin, Neil McComb, Dan Tuohy, Lewis Stevenson, Johann Muller, Iain Henderson, Stephen Ferris, Mike McComish, Chris Henry, Nick Williams.
BACKS: Paul Marshall, Ruan Pienaar, Niall O’Connor, Paddy Jackson, Luke Marshall, Paddy Wallace, Darren Cave, Craig Gilroy, Andrew Trimble, Tommy Bowe, Jared Payne.
It’s good to be able to strengthen a winning squad with the likes of Williams and of course Ferris but any fit 23 from the above, in the appropriate positions of course, should be able to do a job on an injury ravaged Glasgow.
In fairness to the Scots they really went for it against Northampton and, but for injuries, they would have produced the surprise result of the opening round against Northampton. Their injury problems seem to have increased rapidly since the final whistle and a five day turnaround is going to be a big ask for the home side.
They are a hard working, close knit side, and they won’t be push overs by any means but I’m expecting a pretty comfortable win for Ulster and I’m looking forward to the trip to Scotstoun. If we are as good as we think we are our days of worrying about trips like this should be over.