Top names chosen for Barbarians v Ulster Rugby at Ravenhill Thursday 1st June 2017, kick-off 7.30pm

Barbarians head coach Vern Cotter has named the first group of players for the summer tour against Ulster and England.

The Barbarians will take on Ulster at Kingspan Stadium on Thursday 1st June (7.30pm), as well as facing England at Twickenham on Sunday 28th May.

Cotter has called up Australia’s Adam Ashley-Cooper and Will Genia, Facundo Isa from Argentina and Census Johnston of Samoa, all players who bring a wealth of Test experience with them. These four France-based players will be joined by New Zealander Corey Flynn and Connacht’s Bundee Aki.

Wing Ashley-Cooper (116 caps) and scrum half Genia (75 caps) were World Cup finalists in London in 2015, back row forward Isa was one of the stand-out stars of the 2016 Rugby Championship and prop Johnston has appeared in three World Cups for Samoa.

Veteran hooker Flynn, a World Cup winner with New Zealand, will join the tour squad from Glasgow Warriors along with Connacht centre Aki, who picked up the 2015-16 Guinness PRO12 player of the year.

“The Barbarians is all about bringing together talented players from different countries and you can see from the first group of players selected that we’ve been able to do exactly that,” said Cotter.

“We want to compete hard and to entertain in the best traditions of the club, so I’m looking forward to working towards that goal with all the players we’ll have on board when we meet up next month.”

The clash between Ulster and the Barbarians will be the first time the sides have met since 1957, but the Baabaas enjoyed a successful visit to Belfast last November when they beat Fiji 40-7 at Kingspan Stadium.

Tickets for Ulster v Barbarians, priced from £20 for adults and £12 for juniors, are on general sale now at


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