The Guinness PRO12’s busy Christmas schedule kicks off on Friday when Ulster welcome their inter-provincial rivals Connacht to the Kingspan Stadium.
Ulster have only lost once in their last nine games in Belfast but welcome a Connacht side buoyed by last-gasp victory over Wasps in Europe last weekend.
Ulster, meanwhile, slipped to defeat against Clermont having beaten the French giants the week before.
What’s at stake?
Ulster’s win over the Cardiff Blues in round 10 of the Guinness PRO12...
Ulster ace Charles Piutau says he is relishing the chance to take on Clermont Auvergne in their European Rugby Champions Cup encounter in France.The Irish province will be hoping to make it back-to-back Pool 5 wins against Clermont after claiming a famous 39-32 success in Belfast last weekend.
A second victory in eight days could see Ulster top the pool going into 2017, if Bordeaux-Begles fail to beat Exeter Chiefs on Saturday.
New Zealand Full-back Piutau said: "Clermont's stadium is one of...
Rob Lyttle has burst onto the scene for Ulster this season and the winger admits he would love nothing more than to help his side head into the Guinness PRO12 break with a win after a patchy run of form.
Lyttle makes his second-ever Guinness PRO12 start for Ulster – having scored in last week’s defeat to Munster – is a new addition to the starting backline alongside centre Sam Windsor and fly-half Brett Herron.
Pete Browne and Clive Ross join the pack for the crucial clash while academy...
Whoever decided interpros should be the same week as we're preparing for a Test against the All Blacks needs a stern talking to.
Still, we can only work with the hand we've been dealt and fortunately we have the returns of Wiehahn Herbst and Dan Tuohy to offset a portion of the international losses. It's not ideal that their returns from long term lay-offs are to be thrown straight in against one of the biggest packs in the Guinness PRO12, but given our injury situation it was more a...
First and foremost, the rugby takes second place this week.
Last Sunday we lost a legend of the game. The news of Anthony Foley's death rocked the rugby community, and at just 42 it came as a shock to everyone. As the European matches continue, Axel will be commemorated across Ireland, Scotland, Wales, England, France and Italy, a true reflection on how much he impacted rugby, not only in Munster and Ireland.
There will be a minute's silence before every game this weekend, including at the...
Now would be a good time to put a pin in the PRO12 after that defeat to Connacht.
We were off-colour and, for the first time this season, defensively suspect, so ahead of Europe it was maybe best that we received a wake-up call. Because you definitely don't want to be going away to France in anything less than a fully-focused frame of mind.
So the domestic side of the game will take a seat for a second, and instead we have to take on the European beast once more. In some ways it's rather...