Ten stats to know ahead of Ulster v Connacht on Saturday

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Ten facts to know ahead of Ulster v Connacht in the URC on Saturday evening, kick off 7:35pm, Live TV coverage on TG4

Referee: Eoghan Cross (IRFU, 2ndcompetition game)

Assistant:Chris Busby, Andrew Cole(bothIRFU)

TMO:Leo Colgan (IRFU)

1) This is the first competitive match for the new Connacht head coach Peter Wilkins

2) Ulster’s 15-17 defeat to Stormers in Cape Town in last season’s semi-final ended a three-game winning run in the BKT United Rugby Championship.

3) Ulster’s only home defeat in the URC last season was at the hands of Munster on 22 April.

4) Connacht could have as many as seven first time starters – Chay Mullins, Peter Dooley, Josh Murphy, Shamus Hurley-Langton, Adam Byrne, Byron Ralston & David Hawkshaw all signed for Connacht for the up-coming season.

5) Connacht have won three of their last four matches in the BKT United Rugby Championship.

6) Connacht have won three of-their last five away games in the Championship.

7) Connacht’s record against fellow Irish provinces in the URC last season was won two, lost four,

8) The last eight fixtures between the two rivals have been evenly split with four wins apiece.

9) Ulster haven’t lost an opening week game in PRO12/14/16 since 2013 against the Dragons.

10) Connacht have won just twice in Belfast since 1960 but both of those have been in the last four years, 22-15 in October 2018 and 26-24 in the Rainbow Cup in April 2021

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