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McLaughlin Names Extended Ulster Squad

McLaughlin Names Extended Ulster Squad

Ulster head coach Brian McLaughlin has named a preliminary 32-man squad for Friday’s RaboDirect PRO12 match against the Newport Gwent Dragons at Rodney Parade (kick-off 7.05pm).

Darren Cave (hamstring) and Ian Humphreys (shoulder) have responded well to treatment and are fit enough to be named in the extended panel for the round 5 fixture.

Jared Payne was forced off with a dead leg during the loss to the Ospreys last Sunday but is expected to shake that off despite the quick turnaround between matches. Andi Kyriacou also left the pitch early after suffering a neck injury during a scrum.

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Ulster’s 100% winning start to the season came to an end with the 32-14 defeat at the Ospreys. The squad will be looking for a greatly reduced penalty count during their second trip to Wales in a week.

The Dragons have had a less impressive opening to the season, winning just one game in four – a 23-14 success at home to Aironi in round 3.

The Dragons’ only reversal at Rodney Parade in their last five league matches was a 20-13 loss to Ulster back in May.

ULSTER Squad (v Newport Gwent Dragons) – Backs (14): Paul Marshall, Blane McIlroy, Ian Porter, Ian Humphreys, Paddy Jackson, James McKinney, Luke Marshall, Nevin Spence, Darren Cave, Ian Whitten, Craig Gilroy, Conor Gaston, Jared Payne, Adam D’Arcy.

Forwards (18): Jerry Cronin, Conor Carey, Paddy McAllister, Declan Fitzpatrick, Adam Macklin, Andi Kyriacou, John Burns, Niall Annett, Nigel Brady, Tim Barker, Lewis Stevenson, Dan Tuohy, Neil McComb, Pedrie Wannenburg, Mike McComish, Chris Henry (capt), Willie Faloon, Robbie Diack.