Robert Baloucoune retains his place as Ulster take on Benetton

Dan McFarland’s side can leapfrog Italians as they bid for top-three finish in Conference B

Ulster flyer Robert Baloucoune starts on the wing against Benetton. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

Ulster flyer Robert Baloucoune starts on the wing against Benetton. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

 

Pro14, Ulster v Bennetton Rugby, Friday January 25th, Ravenhill (kick-off 7.35pm)

Ulster’s Champions Cup match-winner Robert Baloucoune retains his place in the starting line-up for Friday night’s crunch Pro14 clash with Benetton in Belfast.

Baloucoune scored the winning try away to Leicester Tigers last weekend, and he is retained in the back three alongside the recalled Michael Lowry and Louis Ludik.

James Hume is also recalled at outside centre and partners Stuart McCloskey in midfield, with Billy Burns and Dave Shanahan in the halfbacks.

Andy Warwick and Rob Herring join Marty Moore in the frontrow, with captain Alan O’Connor and Kieran Treadwell in the engine room. Ian Nagle, Nick Timoney and Greg Jones are named in the backrow.

Victory over Benetton would see Ulster leapfrog the Italians and boost their claims for a top three finish in their Pro14 Conference B.

For the visitors, Ian McKinley captains the side from outhalf.

Ulster: M Lowry; R Baloucoune, J Hume, S McCloskey, L Ludik; B Burns, D Shanahan; A Warwick, R Herring, M Moore, A O’Connor (captain), K Treadwell, I Nagle, N Timoney, G Jones. Replacements: J Andrew, W Herbst, T O’Toole, M Dalton, C Ross, J Stewart, D Cave, R Lyttle.

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