18 May, 11:09
IRFU Chief Executive Philip Browne has issued a statement following confirmation of Ronan O'Gara's decision to retire from playing professional rugby.
Coach Alan Solomons agreeing it will be a tough match said, " Edinburgh are a well balanced side with a strong back row, but we are at Ravenhill and all the players are excited about that and ready for the challenge."
Meanwhile, it could prove to be a busy weekend for Scottish Under 21 scrum half Rory Lawson. The Heriot's No 9 is set for a call to Celtic League duty with Edinburgh following a knee injury to Scottish scrum-half Graeme Burns in the 30-20 victory over Swansea. Mike Blair was forced to come off the bench after only two minutes against Swansea to replace Burns and will start against Ulster at Ravenhill on Friday night.
"The injury to Graeme is a real blow given his important contributions both on and off the field," said Edinburgh director of rugby Ian Rankin. "Rory is next in line to come into the squad and I've spoken to the player and his club about the game in Ulster."
Rankin has struck a deal with Heriot's that means Lawson might still be able to play for his club in their BT Scotland Premiership game against Aberdeen GSFP if he is not heavily involved in the Celtic clash. Edinburgh are also waiting to see if Scotland's Lions lock Scott Murray will have recovered from a knee injury in time to play in Ulster.
Ulster Bryn Cunningham; Sheldon Coulter, Ryan Constable, Jonathan Bell (capt), Tyrone Howe; Paddy Wallace, Neil Doak; Robbie Kempson, Matt Sexton, Simon Best; Tony McWhirter/Mark Blair/Jeremy Davidson; Warren Brosnihan, Neil McMillan, Russell Nelson.
Replacements- 16 Justin Fitzpatrick, 17 Paul Shields, 18 Tony McWhirter/Mark Blair/Jeremy Davidson, 19 Neil Best, 20 Kieran Campbell, 21 Adam Larkin, 22 Scott Young.