Ballymena front row forward Andrew Warwick has been included in the preliminary squad for the first time. The 21 year old has previously represented Ulster at Schools’, U20 and Ravens level and may now get an opportunity to line out for the senior side this weekend.
Luke Marshall has returned from injury and should play some part on Friday night, while Ireland U20 star Stuart Olding has also been included among the backs.
Ulster still hold an 11 point gap at the top of the PRO12 league after suffering just one defeat in the opening 13 rounds of the competition; 10-24 away to Munster in December.
Ospreys have now gone four successive matches without a win in all competitions; however in the RaboDirect PRO12 the Welshmen have suffered just one reversal in their last ten encounters.
Ulster have already beaten Ospreys in Swansea in round two this year and are going for a first ever season’s double over the Welsh region.
Extended Ulster squad v Ospreys, RaboDirect PRO12, Friday 8th February, Ravenhill, 7.05pm;
Nigel Brady, Rob Herring, Niall Annett, Callum Black, Ricky Lutton, Andrew Warwick, Tom Court, Lewis Stevenson, Dan Tuohy, Neil McComb, Johann Muller, Mike McComish Robbie Diack, Ali Birch.
Ruan Pienaar, Paul Marshall, Niall O’Connor, Stuart Olding, Paddy Wallace, Luke Marshall, Darren Cave, Michael Allen, Andrew Trimble, Chris Cochrane, Ricky Andrew.
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