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Vermeulen returns at 8 for Ulster's URC clash with the Ospreys

Ian Madigan comes in at out-half as Ulster make nine changes to their starting XV.

Vermeulen is back for Ulster.
Vermeulen is back for Ulster.
Image: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

ULSTER BOSS DAN McFarland has brought Springboks number eight Duane Vermeulen into his starting XV for tomorrow’s URC clash with the Ospreys in Belfast [KO 7.35pm, TG4].

The 36-year-old only recently returned from international duty in the Rugby Championship but comes straight back into the Ulster team as they bid to bounce back from last weekend’s home defeat to Leinster.

McFarland has made nine changes in total, with Jordi Murphy coming into the back row, Sam Carter starting in the second row, and an all-new front row of Eric O’Sullivan, John Andrew, and Marty Moore.

Former Ireland international Ian Madigan comes in at out-half, while Rob Lyttle and Craig Gilroy have been picked on the wings.

Alan O’Connor captains the Ulster team again, while 27-year-old lock Frank Bradshaw-Ryan, a summer signing from the French Pro D2, is set for his debut off the bench.

The Ospreys’ matchday 23 includes former Ulster academy second row Jack Regan.

Ulster:

  • 15. Michael Lowry
  • 14. Craig Gilroy
  • 13. Luke Marshall
  • 12. Stuart McCloskey
  • 11. Rob Lyttle
  • 10. Ian Madigan
  • 9. John Cooney
  • 1. Eric O’Sullivan
  • 2. John Andrew
  • 3. Marty Moore
  • 4. Alan O’Connor (captain)
  • 5. Sam Carter
  • 6. Nick Timoney
  • 7. Jordi Murphy
  • 8. Duane Vermeulen

Replacements:

  • 16. Declan Moore
  • 17. Andy Warwick
  • 18. Tom O’Toole
  • 19. Frank Bradshaw-Ryan
  • 20. Marcus Rea
  • 21. Dave Shanahan
  • 22. Billy Burns
  • 23. Aaron Sexton

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Ospreys:

  • 15. Max Nagy
  • 14. Luke Morgan
  • 13. Owen Watkin
  • 12. Michael Collins
  • 11. Keelan Giles
  • 10. Stephen Myler
  • 9. Reuben Morgan Williams
  • 1. Gareth Thomas
  • 2. Dewi Lake
  • 3. Tom Botha
  • 4. Rhys Davies
  • 5. Huw Sutton
  • 6. Will Griffiths
  • 7. Jac Morgan
  • 8. Dan Lydiate (captain)

Replacements:

  • 16. Scott Baldwin
  • 17. Nicky Smith
  • 18. Rhys Henry
  • 19. Jack Regan
  • 20. Morgan Morris
  • 21. Rhys Webb
  • 22. Jack Walsh
  • 23. Joe Hawkins

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