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Ulster get much-needed win against Connacht at Kingspan Stadium

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Ulster Jared Payne  and Connacht Rodney Ah You  during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park.
Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Jared Payne and Connacht Rodney Ah You during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park. Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Craig Gilroy scores a try against  Connacht      during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park.
Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Craig Gilroy scores a try against Connacht during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park. Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Roger Wilson   and Connacht  Eoin McKeon     during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park.
Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Roger Wilson and Connacht Eoin McKeon during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park. Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Craig Gilroy    and Connacht  Matt Healy     during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park.
Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Craig Gilroy and Connacht Matt Healy during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park. Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Stuart McCloskey,    and Connacht Shane O'Leary and  James Connolly,     during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park.
Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Stuart McCloskey, and Connacht Shane O'Leary and James Connolly, during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park. Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Craig Gilroy    and Connacht  Matt Healy     during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park.
Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Craig Gilroy and Connacht Matt Healy during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park. Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster  Stuart McCloskey    and Connacht  Peter Robb    during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park.
Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Stuart McCloskey and Connacht Peter Robb during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park. Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster  Jared Payne   and Connacht  Robbie Henshaw    during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park.
Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Jared Payne and Connacht Robbie Henshaw during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park. Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Craig Gilroy   and Connacht  Shane O'Leary     during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park.
Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Craig Gilroy and Connacht Shane O'Leary during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park. Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster  Paddy Jackson, kicks a penalty against  Connacht      during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park.
Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Paddy Jackson, kicks a penalty against Connacht during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park. Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Craig Gilroy    and Connacht  Matt Healy     during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park.
Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Craig Gilroy and Connacht Matt Healy during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park. Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Craig Gilroy    and Connacht  Matt Healy     during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park.
Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Craig Gilroy and Connacht Matt Healy during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park. Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

Ulster Jared Payne and Connacht Rodney Ah You during Friday night's Guinness PRO 12 match at the Kingspan Stadium, Ravenhill Park. Picture by Brian Little/Presseye

In a game billed as make or break for their season, Ulster got a much-needed win against Connacht at Kingspan Stadium on Friday night.

A try in either half and eight points from the boot of Paddy Jackson produced the required result even if the hosts could not add to their lead when the league-leaders were reduced to 13 men in the final stages.

The victory, temporarily at least, lifts the side back into the top four and the play-off places ahead of their final three games but they could be left counting the cost of their endeavours after losing both centres, Stuart McCloskey and Luke Marshall to injury.

Rory Best and Craig Gilroy provided Ulster's tries, while it was Caolin Blade who crossed for Connacht.

The side will now have a two week break before they return to action away to Zebre on April 16.

Belfast Telegraph