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Preview: Montpellier v Ulster

18th October 2013 12:09

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Fulgence Ouedraogo Montpellier vs Leinster

Back in the starting XV: Fulgence Ouedraogo

Montpellier have a chance to seize control of Heineken Cup pool 5 at the host Ulster at Stade Yves-du-Manoir on Saturay

Having opened their European campaign with victory away to Treviso last week, Montpellier will look to continue their strong form on home soil

Montpellier are unbeaten in five matches at home in the Top 14 this season and are currently level with Heineken Cup champions Toulon and Toulouse at the summit of te French domestic standings

They opened their season at Yves du Manoir with a 22-22 draw with Toulon and have since put Toulouse (25-0) and ASM Clermont Auvergne (43-3) to the sword on their own patch Montpellier are also undefeated at home in the Heineken Cup; after drawing their first two games they have gone on to win the next four

Having broken their duck in France with a win at Castres last season, Ulster have won seven of their last 10 away games in the pool stage of the Heineken Cup and will be out build on their win over Leicester in Round 1

In team news, Ulster scrum-half, Ruan Pienaar, will make his first start of the season for the visitors

Pienaar's inclusion is one of two personnel changes to the side that beat Leicester Tigers at Ravenhill last Friday night

Man-of-the-match from the Tigers game, Roger Wilson, moves from blindside flanker to Number 8 as Nick Williams misses the game with a calf injury Robbie Diack is promoted from the bench to start at 6

All Black prop, John Afoa, is named as a substitute and is in line to make his first appearance of the season for Ulster having recovered from the calf injury that has kept him out since the summer

Montpellier have made seven changes to their starting XV as skipper Fulgence Ouedraogo starts on the flank.

Anthony Tuitavke shifts from wing to outside centre as Timoci Nagusa returns. At scrum-half Jonathan Pélissié is elevated from the bench after an outstanding performance last week, that included a try.

Up front, Nicolas Mas in benched in favour of Maximiliano Bustos in an all-new front row.

The teams:

Montpellier: 15 Anthony Floch, 14 Timoci Nagusa, 13 Anthony Tuitavaké, 12 Wynand Olivier, 11 Yoan Audrin, 10 François Trinh-Duc, 9 Jonathan Pélissié, 8 Kélian Galletier, 7 Mamuka Gorgodze, 6 Fulgence Ouedraogo (c), 5 Thibaut Privat, 4 Jim Hamilton, 3 Maximiliano Bustos, 2 Mickaël Ivaldi, 1 Yvan Watremez.
Replacements: 16 Thomas Bianchin, 17 Misha Nariashvili, 18 Nicolas Mas, 19 Fred Quercy, 20 Robins Tchalé-Watchou, 21 Benoit Paillaugue, 22 Thomas Combezou, 23 Benoit Sicart.

Ulster:15 Jared Payne, 14 Andrew Trimble, 13 Darren Cave, 12 Luke Marshall, 11 Tommy Bowe, 10 Paddy Jackson, 9 Ruan Pienaar, 8 Roger Wilson, 7 Chris Henry, 6 Robbie Diack, 5 Dan Tuohy, 4 Johann Muller (c), 3 Declan Fitzpatrick, 2 Rory Best, 1 Tom Court
Replacements: 16 Rob Herring, 17 Callum Black, 18 John Afoa, 19 Lewis Stevenson, 20 Iain Henderson, 21 Paul Marshall, 22 Stuart Olding, 23 Michael Allen

Date: Saturday, 19 October
Venue: Stade Yves-du-Manoir, Montpellier
Kick-off: 16:40 local (15:40 BST/ 14:40 GMT)
Referee: Leighton Hodges (Wales)

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Benetton Treviso vs UlsterTBC
Wednesday, January 14
Ulster vs Benetton TrevisoTBC
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Friday , November 21
Ulster 25 - 16 OspreysUlster vs Ospreys Report
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  • Table
Pool 3
European Rugby Champions Cup Table
PosTeamPPts
1Toulon28
2Scarlets24
3Leicester Tigers24
4Ulster21