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Coetzee still not ready for Ulster return

 

By Jonathan Bradley

Ulster continue to maintain they are not concerned with the condition of Marcell Coetzee's knee, even though the flanker is set to miss a fourth game of the new season when the side visit Zebre in Italy on Saturday (2.35pm kick-off).

Last year, the 28-times capped Springbok missed almost all of his debut season at Kingspan Stadium with knee troubles and has been fit to feature just once so far in 2017/18.

Despite the 26-year-old having to deal with two serious knee injuries, and playing on just five occasions since signing a three-year deal with the province in 2016, scrum coach Aaron Dundon played down fears over the most recent setback.

"Honestly I don't think he's far away," said the Kiwi. "We've got four big games coming up so we have to make sure he's available for them."

Jared Payne also won't make the trip to Zebre, although the side will welcome back Jean Deysel.

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