Planet Rugby

Preview: Glasgow v Ulster

01st November 2007 12:47

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Justn Va a in action for the mighty Samoa

Va'a: Returns to the Glasgow line-up

Glasgow's Samoan international prop, Justin Va'a, returns to the Warriors line-up for their Magners League clash against Ulster at Firhill on Friday.

The team also sees Johnnie Beattie reclaim the number eight jersey with Kelly Brown moving to blindside flanker.

"This is the last of our run of home games against Irish opposition and it's going to be the hardest," said Glasgow boss Sean Lineen.

"There is no way Ulster are a bottom of the league side. They have strong running backs and a powerful pack.

"But the best is still to come from Glasgow and I've been very impressed with the way the boys have prepared for this one."

Ulster, who are bottom of the table, have named a side showing two changes to the one who drew against Leinster last week.

David Humphreys starts at fly-half with Paddy Wallace dropping to the bench.

"Like every other position in the team there is a lot of competition for places and Paddy Wallace has started the last two games," said Ulster coach Mark McCall.

"David did really well coming off the bench against Leinster on Friday and deserves his first start of the season"

The other change in the starting lineup sees former Australian lock Justin Harrison partnering Ryan Caldwell in the second row with new Ulster signing Carlo Del Fava being named on the bench.

Bryn Cunningham retains his starting place as full-back with Tommy Bowe and Mark McCrea being named on the wings, Andrew Trimble will partner Scottish international Rob Dewey in the centre.

Form: This is a fourth successive home fixture for Glasgow Warriors and they are unbeaten at home since returning to Firhill over the summer. Glasgow complete a full house of playing the four Irish provinces in successive rounds of the Magners League, and have not lost at home to Irish opposition since Ulster were the visitors to Hughenden last January. Ulster are winless in their last four Magners League encounters since defeating Ospreys at Ravenhill on 21 September. The Ulstermen have won on their last two visits to Glasgow, including a 27-18 victory on their only previous appearance at Firhill in April 2006.

Glasgow: 15 Bernardo Stortoni, 14 Lome Fa'atau, 13 Andrew Henderson, 12 Daryl Gibson, 11 Thom Evans, 10 Dan Parks, 9 Chris O'Young, 8 Johnnie Beattie, 7 John Barclay, 6 Kelly Brown, 5 Alastair Kellock (c), 4 Andy Newman, 3 Moray Low, 2 Fergus Thomson, 1 Justin Va'a.

Replacements: 16 Eric Milligan, 17 Ed Kalman, 18 Dan Turner, 19 James Eddie, 20 Sam Pinder, 21 Scott Barrow, 22 Hefin O'Hare.

Ulster: 15 Bryn Cunningham, 14 Tommy Bowe, 13 Andrew Trimble, 12 Rob Dewey, 11 Mark McCrea, 10 David Humphreys, 9 Isaac Boss, 8 Stephen Ferris, 7 Kieron Dawson, 6 Neil Best, 5 Ryan Caldwell, 4 Justin Harrison, 3 Bryan Young, 2 Rory Best (c), 1 Justin Fitzpatrick.

Replacements: 16 Stuart Philpott, 17 Declan Fitzpatrick, 18 Carlo Del Fava, 19 Roger Wilson, 20 Kieran Campbell, 21 Paddy Wallace, 22 Mark Bartholomeusz.

Date: Friday, 2 November

Kick-off: 19:30 GMT

Venue: Firhill, Glasgow

Referee: tba

Touch judges: tba

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