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Ulster Make Nine Changes

Ulster Make Nine Changes

Ricky Andrew will make his first start for Ulster after being named at full-back for the RaboDirect PRO12 match against Edinburgh at Ravenhill on Friday (kick-off 7.05pm).

Ricky Andrew is one of nine personnel changes to the Ulster team that won away to the Dragons last weekend, with seven of those in the pack.

Head coach Mark Anscombe has named a relatively inexperienced bench which includes development prop Ricky Lutton, who will earn his first ever cap if he is used against the Scots.

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With Andrew earning his second cap at full-back, Jared Payne has switched to outside centre – a position he occupied on a regular basis for his previous club Auckland Blues.

Chris Cochrane will make his fourth appearance for Ulster after being named on the right wing, with Craig Gilroy on the left flank.

The half-back pairing of Paul Marshall and Ruan Pienaar remains unchanged from last weekend, while Paddy Wallace will form the centre pairing with Payne.

Nigel Brady captains the team from hooker in an all-new front row which includes Callum Black and John Afoa. Lewis Stevenson retains his place in the second row where he is joined by Neil McComb.

Stephen Ferris has returned from a back injury to take his place at blindside flanker, with Mike McComish and Roger Wilson coming in at openside flanker and number 8 respectively.

Lutton is joined by fellow Belfast Harlequins front rowers Niall Annett and Adam Macklin on the replacements bench.

Robbie Diack will provide cover for second row and back row after recovering from a leg injury, with Nick Williams the other forward replacement.

Young Academy members Stuart Olding and Peter Nelson, along with Malone’s in-form out-half Niall O’Connor, are the back-line replacements.

ULSTER (v Edinburgh): Ricky Andrew; Chris Cochrane, Jared Payne, Paddy Wallace, Craig Gilroy; Ruan Pienaar, Paul Marshall; Callum Black, Nigel Brady (capt), John Afoa, Lewis Stevenson, Neil McComb, Stephen Ferris, Mike McComish, Roger Wilson.

Replacements: Niall Annett, Ricky Lutton, Adam Macklin, Robbie Diack, Nick Williams, Niall O’Connor, Stuart Olding, Peter Nelson.