Darren Cave captains Ulster for their final Guinness Pro-14 league home game of 2018/19 as he prepares to retire from professional rugby at the end of the season.
Abbey Insurance Academy back row Marcus Rea will make his senior debut for the Province if he’s called upon from the bench, meaning it could be a special day for the Rea family, with brother Matty set to start.
David Busby, who suffered a long-term knee injury in pre-season, is in line to make his first appearance of the season. The utility back has previously played four games and scored a try on his debut against Zebre in February 2017.
Busby will be joined in the back three by Academy players Michael Lowry and Angus Kernohan, who have made a combined total of 30 appearances to date this season.
Cave will partner Peter Nelson in midfield, with David Shanahan and Johnny McPhillips paired at half-back by the Ulster coaching team.
Andy Warwick, John Andrew and Ross Kane are selected in the front row, with Ian Nagle and Alan O’Connor ready to offer support from the second row. Matty Rea, Clive Ross and Sean Reidy complete the forward pack.
Tommy O’Hagan and Jack Owens could make just their second appearances after being named among the replacements alongside Marcus Rea. Adam McBurney, Tom O’Toole, Nick Timoney, Jonny Stewart and Rob Lyttle are the other options on the bench.
Ulster: Michael Lowry; David Busby, Darren Cave (captain), Peter Nelson, Angus Kernohan; Johnny McPhillips, Dave Shanahan, Andy Warwick, John Andrew, Ross Kane, Ian Nagle, Alan O’Connor, Matty Rea, Clive Ross, Sean Reidy.
Replacements: Adam McBurney, Tommy O’Hagan, Tom O’Toole, Nick Timoney, Marcus Rea, Jonny Stewart, Jack Owens, Rob Lyttle.
Ulster v Leinster
Saturday April 27, Kick-Off: 5:15pm