/ Rugby

Stephen Ferris returns from injury to start for Ulster against Edinburgh

Updated: Thursday, 01 Nov 2012 14:46 | Comments

Stephen Ferris has recovered from a back injury ahead of Ulster's clash with Edinburgh
Stephen Ferris has recovered from a back injury ahead of Ulster's clash with Edinburgh

Stephen Ferris has recovered from a back injury and takes his place at blindside flanker for Ulster’s RaboDirect PRO12 encounter with Edinburgh on Friday night at Ravenhill, kick off 7.05pm.

Coach Mark Anscombe has named Ricky Andrew at fullback, which is his first start for an Ulster side that has nine changes to the starting XV that beat Dragons last weekend.

Ulster side to face Edinburgh, RaboDirect PRO12, Friday 2 November, Ravenhill, kick-off 7.05pm: (15-9) - R Andrew; C Cochrane, J Payne, P Wallace, C Gilroy; R Pienaar, P Marshall; (1-8) – C Black, N Brady (capt), J Afoa, L Stevenson, N McComb, S Ferris, M McComish, R Wilson;

Replacements: (16-23) - N Annett, R Lutton, A Macklin, R Diack, N Williams, N O’Connor, S Olding, P Nelson.

Jared Payne has switched to outside centre, a position he occupied on a regular basis for his previous club Auckland Blues, while Chris Cochrane will make his fourth appearance for Ulster after being named on the right wing, with Craig Gilroy on the left flank.

The half-back pairing of Paul Marshall and Ruan Pienaar remains unchanged from last weekend, while Paddy Wallace will start alongside Payne in midfield.

Nigel Brady will captain the team from hooker in an all new front row, which includes Callum Black and John Afoa.

Lewis Stevenson retains his place in the second row and is joined by Neil McComb, while Stephen Ferris has returned from a back injury and takes his place at blindside flanker.

Mike McComish and Roger Wilson come in at openside flanker and number 8 respectively.

Anscombe has named a relatively inexperienced bench, which includes development prop Ricky Lutton, who will earn his first ever cap if he is used against the Scots.

Lutton is joined by fellow Belfast Harlequins front row players Niall Annett and Adam Macklin on the replacements bench.

Robbie Diack will provide cover for second row and back row after recovering from a leg injury, with Nick Williams the other forward replacement.

Young Academy members Stuart Olding and Peter Nelson, along with flyhalf Niall O’Connor, are the backline replacements.

Unbeaten Ulster remain top of the RaboDirect PRO12 table with six wins from their opening six games, including two bonus point victories.

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