Planet Rugby

Preview: Ulster v Ospreys

06th February 2014 11:27

Share:

Ulster celebrate Darrenn Cave Jared Payne

Darren Cave: Starts at 12

Darren Cave will start at inside-centre for Ulster in the PRO12 clash against Ospreys at Ravenhill on Friday.

Cave played at 12 for the Irish Wolfhounds in the victory over England Saxons at Kingsholm last weekend.

He will be partnered in midfield by Jared Payne who switches from full-back to outside centre.

In the back three, Ricky Andrew starts at full-back, Craig Gilroy, who also represented the Wolfhounds, is selected on the left wing and Michael Allen returns to the starting XV on the right.

With Paddy Jackson on international duty, James McKinney is named at fly-half where he will start alongside Ruan Pienaar, who is selected at scrum-half.

In the pack, Tom Court joins Rob Herring, and John Afoa in the front row, Johann Muller partners Lewis Stevenson in the second row and Robbie Diack, Sean Doyle and Roger Wilson form the back row.

Iain Henderson and Luke Marshall have been released by Ireland and are named on the bench. Ireland U20s full-back, Rory Scholes, is also named as a substitute and is in line to make his league debut if called upon.

Meanwhile, Ospreys boss Steve Tandy has rung the changes to his side.

In the back-line, there are four changes to the side that beat Sale in the LV= Cup last weekend.

Sam Davies, who played at fly-half against Sale, takes over from Richard Fussell at full-back while Jeff Hassler and Ashley Beck replace Tom Grabham and Matthew Jenkins at right wing and inside centre respectively.

Matthew Morgan comes in for Davies at fly-half.

Amongs the forwards, there are five changes with Joe Bearman and Sam Lewis replacing Dan Baker and Lloyd Evans in the back-row.

The other changes sees Perry Parker making his first start at lock at Rhodri Hughes' expense while Aaron Jarvis and Duncan Jones are the starting props in place of Dan Suter and Nicky Smith.

Tandy expects a tough outing at Ravenhill.

"These next four weeks are massive for us in terms of how the rest of the season plays out, and beyond that, in regards to what we are trying to build here for the longer term, whatever the future holds for Ospreys Rugby," he said.

"The last couple of weeks in the LV= Cup have been a valuable experience for us in terms of getting some meaningful game time for some of the next generation of Ospreys, and there is a lot to be pleased about.

"The intent and the commitment has been good and that reflected in the way they kept going against Sale last week. We're trying to grow our attacking threat, and anyone who has watched the last two games will be excited about what the future holds for us.

"In the short term though, the focus is on Ulster this weekend then back-to-back games at the Liberty against Treviso and Munster.

"Some of the boys who have performed well over the last couple of games will get a chance to show what they can do while we have an experienced core to the group who will have to lead by example.

"Ravenhill is always a very difficult place to go and play, whatever time of the season you go there, but even more so during the international period.

"They have a strong core that is available to them throughout the season, with some world class overseas players, and that allows them to stay strong during this period.

"It's an example of what can be achieved by union and club working together for the good of the game, certainly.

"We know that it's going to be a challenge for us but we are up for it and looking forward to getting this period of games started."

The teams:

Ulster: 15 Ricky Andrew, 14 Craig Gilroy, 13 Jared Payne, 12 Darren Cave, 11 Michael Allen, 10 James McKinney, 9 Ruan Pienaar, 8 Roger Wilson, 7 Sean Doyle, 6 Robbie Diack, 5 Lewis Stevenson, 4 Johann Muller (c), 3 John Afoa, 2 Rob Herring, 1 Tom Court.
Replacements: 16 Niall Annett, 17 Callum Black, 18 Ricky Lutton, 19 Iain Henderson, 20 Nick Williams, 21 P Marshall, 22 Luke Marshall, 23 Rory Scholes.

Ospreys: 15 Sam Davies, 14 Jeff Hassler, 13 Jonathan Spratt (c), 12 Ashley Beck, 11 Aisea Natoga, 10 Matthew Morgan, 9 Tom Habberfield, 8 Joe Bearman, 7 Sam Lewis, 6 Tyler Ardron, 5 Perry Parker, 4 Lloyd Peers, 3 Aaron Jarvis, 2 Scott Baldwin, 1 Duncan Jones.
Replacements: 16 Matthew Dwyer, 17 Ryan Bevington, 18 Dan Suter, 19 Dan Baker, 20 Morgan Allen, 21 Tito Tebaldi, 22 Richard Fussell, 23 Eli Walker.

Date: Friday, February 7
Kick-off: 19:35 GMT
Venue: Ravenhill
Referee: Nigel Owens (Wales)
Assistant referees: Dudley Phillips (Ireland), John Carvill (Ireland)
Television match official: Marshall Kilgore (Ireland)
Assessor: Jack Young (Ireland)

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 28
Bath vs Harlequins19:45
Saturday , November 29
Leicester Tigers vs Wasps15:00
Exeter vs Saracens16:30
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
International Match
Saturday , November 29
Wales vs South Africa14:30
England vs Australia14:30
More International Match fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Sunday , November 23
Edinburgh vs Cardiff BluesEdinburgh vs Cardiff Blues Preview
Friday , November 28
Munster vs Ulster19:35
Cardiff Blues vs Treviso19:35
Saturday , November 29
Zebre vs Edinburgh15:00
Leinster vs Ospreys17:15
Connacht vs Scarlets19:30
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , November 29
Oyonnax vs Bordeaux-Begles18:00
Lyon vs Montpellier18:00
La Rochelle vs Bayonne18:00
Castres vs Racing Metro Paris18:00
Toulon vs Clermont Auvergne18:00
More Top 14 fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 23
Saracens 24 - 31 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
London Welsh 5 - 26 Leicester TigersLondon Welsh vs Leicester Tigers Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Georgia 35 - 24 JapanGeorgia vs Japan Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Treviso 24 - 24 LeinsterTreviso vs Leinster Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 22
London Irish 23 - 33 BathLondon Irish vs Bath Report
Exeter 31 - 15 WaspsExeter vs Wasps Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Italy 6 - 22 South AfricaItaly vs South Africa Report
Ireland 26 - 23 AustraliaIreland vs Australia Report
Wales 16 - 34 New ZealandWales vs New Zealand Report
France 13 - 18 ArgentinaFrance vs Argentina Report
England 28 - 9 SamoaEngland vs Samoa Report
Romania 18 - 9 CanadaRomania vs Canada Report
Scotland 37 - 12 TongaScotland vs Tonga Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 21
Harlequins 12 - 16 Sale SharksHarlequins vs Sale Sharks Report
Newcastle Falcons 20 - 10 GloucesterNewcastle Falcons vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Fiji 20 - 14 USAFiji vs USA Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Dragons 12 - 38 MunsterDragons vs Munster Report
Scarlets 19 - 9 Glasgow WarriorsScarlets vs Glasgow Warriors Report
Connacht 43 - 3 ZebreConnacht vs Zebre Report
Ulster 25 - 16 OspreysUlster vs Ospreys Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 16
Leicester Tigers 21 - 21 SaracensLeicester Tigers vs Saracens Report
Wasps 71 - 7 London WelshWasps vs London Welsh Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Ireland 49 - 7 GeorgiaIreland vs Georgia Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 15
Sale Sharks 36 - 8 London IrishSale Sharks vs London Irish Report
Bath 23 - 14 Newcastle FalconsBath vs Newcastle Falcons Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Northampton830
2Exeter828
3Bath828
4Saracens825
5Leicester Tigers821