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Bowe Back In Ulster Squad

Bowe Back In Ulster Squad

Ulster winger Tommy Bowe has recovered from injury to be named in their matchday squad for Saturday’s Heineken Cup quarter-final clash with Saracens at Twickenham (kick-off 6.30pm).

The fit-again Tommy Bowe has not played since he suffered knee ligament damage against Northampton Saints in December. He is listed among the province’s replacements for the Saracens match.

All Blacks tighthead prop John Afoa returns to the starting line-up after missing the derby win over Leinster as he was in New Zealand for the birth of his third child.

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There are two further changes to the team that recorded Ulster’s first win in Dublin since 1999, with young Ireland internationals Iain Henderson and Luke Marshall both earning starting berths.

Henderson is preferred at blindside flanker to Robbie Diack who drops to the bench, while Marshall starts at inside centre having recovered from the concussion that he sustained playing for Ireland against Italy in the RBS 6 Nations.

Commenting on the return of Bowe, Ulster head coach Mark Anscombe said: “Tommy has trained very well. He is champing at the bit to get out there – he has missed a lot of rugby and he wants to play.

“We want to accommodate him because he is a world class player. It is a credit to our head of strength and conditioning Jonny Davis and to Gareth Robinson, Alan McCaldin and the rest of our medical staff that he is ready.”

Looking ahead to the game, Anscombe added: “We’re playing in the quarter-final of a great competition, at one of the best grounds in rugby, against the side leading the Aviva Premiership and there’s going to be a big crowd. It doesn’t get any better than that.”

More than 35,000 tickets have been sold for the match. Tickets are still available via Ticketmaster. Tickets can also be purchased tomorrow at the RFU ticket office at Twickenham from 2pm.

ULSTER (v Saracens): Jared Payne; Andrew Trimble, Darren Cave, Luke Marshall, Craig Gilroy; Paddy Jackson, Ruan Pienaar; Tom Court, Rory Best, John Afoa, Johann Muller (capt), Dan Tuohy, Iain Henderson, Chris Henry, Nick Williams.

Replacements: Rob Herring, Callum Black, Ricky Lutton, Robbie Diack, Mike McComish, Paul Marshall, Stuart Olding, Tommy Bowe.