For photos of the Ulster players training at Newforge in the lead-up to this game, please click here.
Team News: South African tighthead prop BJ Botha will make his debut for Ulster against the Llanelli Scarlets in the first game of the province's 2008/09 Magners League campaign.
Botha only linked up with the Ulster squad last weekend but coach Matt Williams is confident that the World Cup winner will be ready for Friday's game.
"Brendon (BJ) has been training with the Sharks for the last few weeks so I have no concerns over his fitness levels, he has impressed us all at training this week and I am delighted to name him in the side," Williams admitted.
"It's important to hit the ground running and I feel we have picked a strong side for the first game."
Williams has made several changes to the Ulster side that lost to Worcester over a week ago at Ravenhill.
The front row is transformed with stalwart Justin Fitzpatrick named at loosehead, team captain Rory Best at hooker and Botha on the tighthead side.
In the second row Italian lock Carlo Del Fava partners new recruit Ed O'Donoghue.
The back row sees recent signing Robbie Diack return at number 8 with Matt McCullough and Kieron Dawson named as the two flankers.
Isaac Boss and Paddy Wallace have been named as the half-back pairing with former Australia 'A' international Clinton Schifcofske positioned at full-back.
Ireland ace Andrew Trimble starts on the right wing with Fijian international Timoci Nagusa taking on the left wing berth.
The centre pairing of Scotland's Rob Dewey and Ireland Sevens star Darren Cave could cause the Scarlets a number of problems.
Meanwhile, with first choice centres Regan King (hamstring) and Jonathan Davies (leg) both out injured, the Scarlets will field Rob Higgitt and Gavin Evans in midfield.
Also in the visitors' back-line, Sililo Martens will be stepping into Dwayne Peel's boots at scrum half. Peel has left Llanelli for Sale Sharks.
The Welsh region are also currently without the services of injured flanker Johnathan Edwards (knee), but former Ireland flanker Simon Easterby is still part of an impressive back row unit which includes Australia's David Lyons.
Lyons and New Zealand duo Kees Meeuws and Simon Maling will all be making their competitive debuts for Llanelli.
This is Nigel Davies' first competitive game in charge of the Scarlets since his return to Stradey Park, following Phil Davies' departure at the end of last season.
ULSTER: Clinton Schifcofske; Andrew Trimble, Darren Cave, Rob Dewey, Timoci Nagusa; Paddy Wallace, lsaac Boss; Justin Fitzpatrick, Rory Best (capt), BJ Botha, Carlo Del Fava, Ed O'Donoghue, Matt McCullough, Kieron Dawson, Robbie Diack.
Replacements: Nigel Brady, Tom Court, Ryan Caldwell, David Pollock, Cillian Willis, Niall O'Connor, Bryn Cunningham.