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Ulster Make One Change For Aironi Clash

Ulster Make One Change For Aironi Clash

Ulster head coach Brian McLaughlin has made only one change to the starting line-up to face Aironi at Stadio Zaffanella on Saturday (kick-off 3pm local time/2pm Irish time).

Tim Barker has replaced Lewis Stevenson in the second row where he will partner Dan Tuohy. Stevenson drops to the bench as a result, so there is no place for Neil McComb in the matchday squad.

The pack is otherwise unchanged, with young prop Paddy McAllister joining Jerry Cronin and Andi Kyriacou in the front row.

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Chris Henry, a try scorer against Glasgow, will again captain the side from number 8 alongside Willie Faloon and Pedrie Wannenburg.

Brian McLaughlin will field the same back-line that started against Glasgow last week, with Ian Whitten, who impressed out of position on the wing, retaining his place.

Prop Declan Fitzpatrick has returned to duty after suffering concussion during pre-season and has been named on the bench. Luke Marshall has also earned a place among the replacements at the expense of young Peter Henderson.

Meanwhile, new signing Jared Payne arrived from New Zealand on Monday and will travel to Italy but is not being rushed into action.

Ulster played Aironi on four occasions last season and came away with four wins, scoring 14 tries in the process and conceding just one.

The Italians are still looking to add to their sole victory in the competition, which was a home win over Connacht in March.

ULSTER (v Aironi Rugby): Adam D’Arcy; Craig Gilroy, Darren Cave, Nevin Spence, Ian Whitten; Ian Humphreys, Paul Marshall; Paddy McAllister, Andi Kyriacou, Jerry Cronin, Tim Barker, Dan Tuohy, Pedrie Wannenburg, Willie Faloon, Chris Henry.

Replacements: Nigel Brady, Declan Fitzpatrick, Adam Macklin, Lewis Stevenson, Robbie Diack, Ian Porter, Paddy Jackson, Luke Marshall.