Ulster back to business
Coach Brian McLaughlin today names his squad for Ulster’s return to Magners League action following three weeks of inactivity.
On Sunday they face Cardiff Blues in the Welsh capital (3.45).
Traditionally the Guinness Series break has hit Ulster hard with the disruption to continuity and the loss of players to international calls taking a toll.
Even before this year’s cessation they had gone into a wobble for after losing to Biarritz in the Heineken Cup. Previously unbeaten Ulster then lost two successive Magners League matches — away to Edinburgh and at home to Munster— as a result of which they have slipped to fifth place in the table.
By contrast, Cardiff, who are third, have lost only one of their past five Magners League matches and their record against the Irish provinces is excellent, witness victories in four of their last five games against them.
Ulster have not won away since beating Aironi in round two and last beat Cardiff, home or away, in October 2006.