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Ulster lock Ed’s up for a crack at Quins

Lock Ed O’Donoghue is hoping Ulster can exact revenge of London Harlequins when the sides meet at Ravenhill in the Heineken Cup on Saturday.

The London born second row was part of the Ulster side that went down 42-21 at the Stoop.

Ulster can’t make the last eight but could have a big say as to who qualifies with a match against leaders Quins and a trip to second place Stade Francais next weekend.

“We got out of the gates and started very well over there but they played smart rugby,” stated O’Donoghue.

“We’re playing at home on Saturday and we don’t like losing at home, the fact that we can’t qualify has not been raised we just want to go out and put on a performance,” he said.

“When I was at Saints I never got the chance to play against Quins as they were relegated that season.

“They have good players and they are performing very well in Europe although they’ve suffered a few defeats in the premiership.”

O’Donoghue came to Ulster on a two year contract from the Queensland Reds but learn his trade in England at the Northampton Saints and the Worcester Warriors.

With Italian international Carlo Del Fava and emerging talent in Ryan Caldwell already established in the team |O’Donoghue knew he would have to fight for his place but is delighted with the way things have gone so far at Ravenhill.

“I didn’t expect to get too much game time but I’m pretty happy with the amount I’ve played.

“There is a lot of competition in the squad but unfortunately

Carlo and Ryan have both been injured. I think when everybody is fit and on board we make a great unit.”

As in all games the key will be which side can assert dominance up front and O’Donoghue believes it will be a huge battle at the set piece.

“They have a very good pack with good individual players so it will be a competition at the scrum and line out but one of our strengths is our scrum,” reasoned the lock.

Ulster are determined to put the events of Murrayfield last Friday night behind them and to reproduce what the achieved at Munster especially when it comes to scoring tries.

“We need to turn things around, at Edinburgh we lost the chance to consolidate and this week it is all about getting back on the horse.”

Going into the Edinburgh game we were equal top try scores but it was disappointing not to cross the line,” he added.

O’Donoghue grew up in Brisbane and has played for Australia U19’s but can play for Ireland due to his parents but admits the though hasn’t earned his mind.

“I just want to do well for my province and help them get a couple of wins going into the Six Nations break,” concluded |O’Donoghue.

Belfast Telegraph


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