Ulster aiming to extend their perfect run
Zebre v UlsterUlster have made five personnel changes for their PRO12 journey to Zebre tomorrow, where props Tom Court and Declan Fitzpatrick are named on the bench, having been released from international duty.
Half backs Michael Heaney and Niall O’Connor have been included in the starting line-up in place of Paul Marshall and Ruan Pienaar, both of whom are on international duty this weekend. The ubiquitous Jared Payne will continue at outside centre alongside Paddy Wallace as Ulster seek to keep their perfect record of seven wins from seven intact,
Michael Allen returns to the team for the first time since picking up an ankle injury against Cardiff in September. His inclusion on the right wing results in Chris Cochrane switching to the left in place of Declan’s Kidney’s choice for Thomond Park, Craig Gilroy. Academy fullback Ricky Andrew earns his second start.
The front row of Callum Black, John Afoa and Nigel Brady remains, with Brady continuing as captain in the absence of Johann Muller.
Robbie Diack moves into the second row with Neil McComb, while Nick Williams is elevated to blindside flanker, Mike McComish and Roger Wilson retaining their places at openside and number 8 respectively. It is the first time Ulster has ever played Zebre, who are the bottom placed team with no wins from seven.