There are six changes to Ulster’s starting XV for Friday’s Guinness PRO14 clash against Toyota Cheetahs (Toyota Stadium, 7.15pm SA time / 6.15pm BST).
Abbey Insurance Academy players Eric O’Sullivan and Angus Kernohan are set to make their first starts for the Province after producing impressive performances off the bench in recent weeks, including in Sunday’s 7-28 win versus Southern Kings.
The other newcomers to the team include tighthead prop Wiehahn Herbst, blindside flanker Matthew Rea, scrumhalf Dave Shanahan and fullback Will Addison, a late withdrawal from the team to face the Kings due to illness.
O’Sullivan and Herbst will pack down in the front row alongside skipper Rob Herring, while Alan O’Connor and Kieran Treadwell are retained in the second row.
The selection of Rea sees a slight re-shuffle in the back row, with Marcell Coetzee moving to number 8, while Sean Reidy stays in the number 7 jersey.
Shanahan comes in at scrumhalf for John Cooney, who sustained a head injury in the win last week, and he will partner Billy Burns at half back.
Henry Speight shifts from the wing to centre to play alongside Stuart McCloskey, so Kernohan, who scored his first senior try last week, gets an opportunity from the start. Addison and Craig Gilroy complete the starting side.
Forwards John Andrew, Andrew Warwick, Tom O’Toole, Jean Deysel and Nick Timoney will hope to provide Head Coach Dan McFarland with plenty of impact off the bench. Jonny Stewart will make his first appearance of the season if called upon, while fellow backs Angus Curtis and Darren Cave are also in the match day 23.
The match will be televised live on Premier Sports and eir Sport, with radio commentary on BBC Radio Ulster.
Ulster team to play Toyota Cheetahs, Guinness PRO14 Round 4, Friday 21st September, Toyota Stadium (7.15pm SA time/ 6.15pm BST):
(15-9): W Addison; C Gilroy, H Speight, S McCloskey, A Kernohan; B Burns, D Shanahan;
(1-8): E O’Sullivan, R Herring (captain), W Herbst, A O’Connor, K Treadwell, M Rea, S Reidy, M Coetzee;
Replacements (16-23): J Andrew, A Warwick, T O’Toole, J Deysel, N Timoney, J Stewart, A Curtis, D Cave.