Ulster have made five changes ahead of their Challenge Cup semi-final with Leicester Tigers on Friday at Welford Road (8pm).

Eric O'Sullivan and Marty Moore return to the starting front row, while Rob Herring is retained at hooker. Iain Henderson will captain the side and is joined by Alan O’Connor in the engine room.

Matty Rea retains his starting berth at blindside flanker, with Jordi Murphy returning to the openside position, and Nick Timoney completing the base of the pack at No 8.

The starting back three remains unchanged from the match with Connacht last week.

Jacob Stockdale is named at full-back, with Ethan McIlroy and Robert Baloucoune on the wings. Stuart McCloskey comes back into midfield to pair up with James Hume. John Cooney starts at scrum-half with Billy Burns at fly-half.

John Andrew, Andrew Warwick, Tom O’Toole, Kieran Treadwell, Sean Reidy. Alby Mathewson, Michael Lowry and Will Addison will offer back line cover.

Leicester head coach Steve Borthwick has also made five switches to the team that lost 23-18 to Northampton last weekend.

Blindside flanker George Martin, scrum-half Richard Wigglesworth, centre Matías Moroni and wings Nemani Nadolo and Guy Porter come into the side.

Borthwick said: "Ulster are a very good team, who finished their PRO14 season in second place on their conference table and come to Mattioli Woods Welford Road on the back of two impressive away wins in Europe against English sides.

"They have an experienced squad, including many current internationals, and have a top-quality coaching team."

Ulster team: Jacob Stockdale; Robert Baloucoune, James Hume, Stuart McCloskey, Ethan McIlroy; Billy Burns, John Cooney; Eric O’Sullivan, Rob Herring, Marty Moore; Alan O’Connor, Iain Henderson (C); Matty Rea, Jordi Murphy, Nick Timoney.

Replacements: John Andrew, Andrew Warwick, Tom O’Toole, Kieran Treadwell, Sean Reidy, Alby Mathewson, Michael Lowry, Will Addison.

Leicester: Freddie Steward; Guy Porter, Matias Moroni, Matt Scott, Nemani Nadolo; George Ford, Richard Wigglesworth; Ellis Genge, Tom Youngs (C), Dan Cole; Harry Wells, Calum Green; George Martin, Hanro Liebenberg, Jasper Wiese.

Replacements: Charlie Clare, Luan de Bruin, Joe Heyes, Tomas Lavanini, Cyle Brink, Ben Youngs, Zack Henry, Kini Murimurivalu.