Rory Best could make early Ulster return against Montpellier

Ireland hooker has recovered from broken arm

Rory Best scores Ireland’s second try during the game against New Zealand at the Aviva Stadium in November. Photograph:  James Crombie/Inpho

Rory Best scores Ireland’s second try during the game against New Zealand at the Aviva Stadium in November. Photograph: James Crombie/Inpho

Tue, Jan 7, 2014, 17:07

Ireland hooker Rory Best could make a return to action for Ulster’s Heineken Cup clash at home to Montpellier on Friday after making an early recovery from a broken arm.

The 31-year-old suffered the injury in the November international against New Zealand, a match in which he scored a try and also played on after breaking his arm.

The initial prognosis was that Best would struggle to make the start of the Six Nations campaign for Ireland and also the final two Heineken Cup pool games for his province.

Ulster presently lead Pool 5 by three points from Leicester, with the winners set to be decided when the two sides meet at Welford Road on Saturday week.

Another international who could return this weekend is Leinster winger Fergus McFadden, who fractured his hand in the defeat to Australia in November.

McFadden took part in Leinster training today and a decision will be taken later in the week as to whether he will play in Sunday’s trip to play Castres at Stade Pierre-Antoine.

Aaron Dundon (shoulder) and Rhys Ruddock (calf) are expected to return to full training ahead of Friday’s team announcement, while Shane Jennings, Leo Cullen and Luke Fitzgerald all took part in training today.

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Rabo Pro 12

Team P W D L F A BP Pts
Leinster 20 15 1 4 517 319 12 74
Munster 20 15 0 5 466 308 8 68
Ulster 20 14 0 6 431 270 9 65
Glasgow 19 15 0 4 355 259 4 64
Ospreys 20 12 1 7 499 338 10 60
Scarlets 20 9 1 10 374 400 8 46
Cardiff 20 7 1 12 388 496 7 37
Edinburgh 19 7 0 12 338 419 7 35
Connacht 20 6 0 14 336 442 10 34
Dragons 20 6 1 13 349 439 5 31
Treviso 20 5 1 14 341 533 7 29
Zebre 20 4 2 14 317 478 5 25

Pool One

Team P W D L F A BP Pts
Leinster 6 5 0 1 152 66 2 22
Northampton 6 4 0 2 107 104 1 17
Castres 6 2 0 4 78 104 1 9
Ospreys 6 1 0 5 75 138 1 5

Pool Two

Team P W D L F A BP Pts
Toulon 6 5 0 1 170 104 4 24
Cardiff 6 3 0 3 119 148 2 14
Exeter 6 2 0 4 118 123 4 12
Glasgow 6 2 0 4 98 130 3 11

Pool Three

Team P W D L F A BP Pts
Toulouse 6 5 0 1 143 63 3 23
Saracens 6 4 0 2 217 74 4 20
Connacht 6 3 0 3 101 147 1 13
Zebre 6 0 0 6 33 210 0 0

Pool Four

Team P W D L F A BP Pts
Clermont 6 5 0 1 139 69 4 24
Harlequins 6 3 0 3 126 103 4 16
Scarlets 6 2 1 3 122 150 1 11
Racing Metro 6 1 1 4 66 131 1 7

Pool Five

Team P W D L F A BP Pts
Ulster 6 6 0 0 179 62 2 26
Leicester 6 4 0 2 159 112 5 21
Montpellier 6 2 0 4 121 124 3 11
Treviso 6 0 0 6 41 202 0 0

Pool Six

Team P W D L F A BP Pts
Munster 6 5 0 1 161 77 3 23
Gloucester 6 3 0 3 113 114 2 14
Edinburgh 6 3 0 3 104 141 0 12
Perpignan 6 1 0 5 112 158 3 7