The Ulster team has been named for Friday’s inter-provincial derby against Connacht at Kingspan Stadium (kick-off 7.35pm).
Over 17,000 tickets have already been sold for the eagerly anticipated contest, which is heading towards a sell-out. The last remaining tickets are available at ulsterrugby.com/buytickets.
Hooker Rob Herring will lead out the side and he will be joined in the front row by Marty Moore and the returning Jack McGrath. Alan O’Connor and Kieran Treadwell are paired together in the engine room, with Matthew Rea, Sean Reidy and Marcell Coetzee selected as the loose forward trio.
Will Addison returns from suspension to start at fullback and he is joined in the back three by Robert Baloucoune and Louis Ludik. The familiar pairings of Stuart McCloskey and Luke Marshall, and John Cooney and Billy Burns are named as the midfield and half-back pairings respectively.
On the bench, Adam McBurney, Kyle McCall, Tom O’Toole, David O’Connor and Nick Timoney provide the forwards reinforcements, with David Shanahan, Bill Johnston and Craig Gilroy covering the backline.
Ulster team to play Connacht, Guinness PRO14 Round 9, Friday 27 December at Kingspan Stadium (kick-off 7.35pm):
(15-9) Will Addison, Robert Baloucoune, Luke Marshall, Stuart McCloskey, Louis Ludik, Billy Burns, John Cooney;
(1-8) Jack McGrath, Rob Herring (Capt), Marty Moore, Alan O’Connor, Kieran Treadwell, Matthew Rea, Sean Reidy, Marcell Coetzee.
Replacements: Adam McBurney, Kyle McCall, Tom O’Toole, David O’Connor, Nick Timoney, David Shanahan, Bill Johnston, Craig Gilroy.