Dan McFarland and Leo Cullen have named their respective starting teams ahead of the sides Guinness PRO 14 meeting at the Kingspan Stadium on Saturday. The sides are very experimental but a win will be what is on both sets of players minds.
Looking at Ulster first. Darren Cave who will retire at the end of the season will captain Ulster. In the forwards, Andy Warwick, John Andrew and Ross Kane will team up in the front row, the second row will see Ian Nagle partner Alan O’Connor. The back row will see Matty Rea ( who’s brother Marcus is on the bench) , Clive Ross and Sean Reidy all start. Dave Shanahan and Johnny McPhilips will team up in the half back combination, while Darren Cave and Peter Nelson combine in midfield. Angus Kernohan and Dave Busby are on the wings, while Michael Lowry is named at full back for the hosts.
Leo Cullen has also named an experimental side. He has included Jack McGrath, Bryan Byrne and Michael Bent in the front row, the second row pairing will see Oisin Dowling whom is making his first senior start and Josh Murphy. The back row then Will Connors, Max Deegan and Caelan Dorris all start. In the backs then Jimmy O’Brien is selected at full back, with Fergus McFadden and Dave Kearney on the wings. In midfield Noel Reid partners Joe Tomane. The half back pairing will be Ross Byrne at fly half who will captain the team and Nick McCarthy at scrum half.
Ulster: Michael Lowry; David Busby, Darren Cave (captain), Peter Nelson, Angus Kernohan; Johnny McPhillips, Dave Shanahan;
Andy Warwick, John Andrew, Ross Kane, Ian Nagle, Alan O’Connor, Matty Rea, Clive Ross, Sean Reidy;
Replacements: Adam McBurney, Tommy O’Hagan, Tom O’Toole, Nick Timoney, Marcus Rea, Jonny Stewart, Jack Owens, Rob Lyttle.
Leinster: Jimmy O’Brien, Fergus McFadden, Joe Tomane, Noel Reid, Dave Kearney, Ross Byrne, Nick McCarthy;
Jack McGrath, Bryan Byrne, Michael Bent, Josh Murphy, Oisin Dowling, Max Deegan, Will Connors, Caelan Doris.
Replacements: Rónan Kelleher, Peter Dooley, Vakh Abdaladze, Ryan Baird, Scott Penny, Paddy Patterson, Ciarán Frawley, Barry Daly