Key players Stephen Ferris, Tom Court and skipper Johann Muller are all still battling knocks in order to be fit for Ulster's Heineken Cup opener against Clermont Auvergne on Saturday at Ravenhill (kick-off 3.40pm)
All three are receiving treatment for injuries they picked up on Saturday night's PRO12 League win over Connacht and a decision regarding their availability for the must-win clash with Clermont will be made later this week.
Though they were yesterday described as all still being in contention for Saturday, should any of the trio not come through what has been described as ‘continual treatment’ then it will be a huge blow to Ulster coach Brian McLaughlin.
The Ulster coach is already having to do without Ruan Pienaar, out for six weeks with a hamstring problem, and new signing Jared Payne who looks to be missing for the season with a ruptured Achilles.
Muller has suffered soft tissue damage to his right forearm while Ferris (pictured) and Court sustained ankle and knee twists respectively.
There was added concern surrounding second row Muller who at the end of the game was seen leaving the pitch while clutching his right arm with what was initially feared to be a fracture.
Ferris and Court both had to leave the field in the second half during Saturday night’s win over Connacht, which halted a four-game losing run for McLaughlin's squad.
Centre Paddy Wallace was also in the wars but his dislocated finger is believed to be minor and should not rule him out of the clash with the high-flying French club who are widely seen as favourites to top Ulster's group.
Also on the injury front, prop Declan Fitzpatrick returned to training this week after an ankle problem forced his late withdrawal from Ulster’s defeat at the Scarlets on October 29 and he is believed to be in contention for selection on Saturday.
Barn-storming flanker Ferris, who was playing his first game for Ulster since shipping a serious knee injury last January, caused major concern around Ravenhill on Saturday night as the 26-year-old Ireland star lay prone on the pitch for several minutes while receiving attention before leaving the field with his ankle issue.
As for Court, he too left the game in the second half after twisting a knee though the Ireland prop was initially confident that he would still be fine for Saturday’s game and that his removal from the match was mainly taken as a precaution.
Meanwhile, the situation regarding temporary signing Stefan Terblanche remained unclear yesterday as his UK work visa was still pending final approval over a week after it was revealed he was on his way to Ravenhill.
The 36-year-old former Springbok, who is due to join Ulster on a three-month loan deal after being brought in as cover for injured full back Payne, was believed to be standing by and awaiting clearance to get on a flight from South Africa should his visa be approved.
However, it is believed that if Ulster are unable to get Terblanche’s work visa approved before tomorrow then the former Natal Sharks star will miss the deadline for ERC player eligibility registration and will therefore not be involved against Clermont.
Meanwhile, centre Darren Cave is gearing up for what he hopes is a starting place for Saturday and the chance to have a good tilt at one of the strongest club sides in France.
“They (Clermont) are an awesome team with a lot of power and not just up front really all over the team.
“But this I think is the best Ulster team on paper that I've played in over the last four or five seasons.
“We know have a tough group and at the end of the day if you want to play in the quarter-finals you've got to beat the big teams,” Cave added.