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Lealiifano captains Ulster as Kiss names an exciting backline for Treviso

Paul Marshall is set to make his 200th appearance for the province.

Lealiifano captains Ulster tomorrow evening.
Lealiifano captains Ulster tomorrow evening.
Image: Billy Stickland/INPHO

CHRISTIAN LEALIIFANO WILL captain Ulster for the first time when Treviso visit Belfast tomorrow evening [KO 7.35pm/BBC NI], with Paul Marshall set to make his 200th appearance for the province.

Lealiifano, who this week confirmed he will be returning to Australia when his short-term deal expires in January, has been named to start at inside centre in an exciting backline selected by Les Kiss.

John Cooney and Peter Nelson make up the half back pairing with Craig Gilroy, Tommy Bowe and Charles Piutau forming a potentially explosive back three. Louis Ludik joins Lealiifano in midfield.

Marshall will reach the landmark appearance should he come off the bench with Ireland internationals Darren Cave and Andrew Trimble also named among the replacements.

There is a first senior start of the season for Ross Kane at tighthead as he partners Callum Black and John Andrew in the front row. Kieran Treadwell, who featured in Ireland’s win over Fiji last week, returns to the second row alongside Alan O’Connor.

Academy back rows Aaron Hall and Nick Timoney are named at openside flanker and number 8 respectively, in what will be a senior debut for the former. Clive Ross completes the back row.

Ulster go into the game second in Conference A of the Pro14 having won six of their opening eight games this term.

Ulster:

15. Charles Piutau
14. Tommy Bowe
13. Louis Ludik
12. Christian Lealiffano
11. Craig Gilroy
10. Peter Nelson
9. John Cooney

1. Callum Black
2. John Andrew
3. Ross Kane
4. Kieran Treadwell
5. Alan O’Connor
6. Clive Ross
7. Aaron Hall
8. Nick Timoney.

Replacements:

16. Rob Herring
17. Schalk van der Merwe
18. Andy Warwick
19. Matthew Dalton
20. Greg Jones
21. Paul Marshall
22. Darren Cave
23. Andrew Trimble.

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