Thursday, 12 December 2013

Ulster Ravens v Ayr preview

It was a fantastic win for Ayr last week against Ulster Ravens at Millbrae, and the men in pink and black will be hoping to put in another big performance in their return leg at Deramore on Friday night. 

Although Ayr head coach Peter Laverie is looking forward to his players taking on the Ravens again, he's well aware of the threat the Ulstermen pose.

"We are under no illusion about the task ahead.  Ulster will be desperate to make amends in front of their home crowd and keep their British and Irish Cup qualification hopes alive, so nothing short of our best efforts will do."

He adds: "This competition is great for the players; they really get to challenge themselves and it raises standards for everyone involved.  We have our goals: a good performance is essential before the return to league business next week and of course to give our own loyal support something to cheer about."

There are some significant changes in the backs this week, with players moving position.  Finn Russell starts at inside centre to make way for his Glasgow Warriors team-mate Scott Wight at stand-off, meaning Ross Curle moves to the wing.

In the forwards, the young front row of George Hunter, Fergus Scott and D'arcy Rae continues after a solid showing last week.  Graham Williamson comes into the second row in place of the injured Scott Sutherland.  Glasgow Warriors' James Eddie is once more part of a dynamic back row.

It's a strong bench yet again, with the fleet-of-foot Finlay Gillies covering hooker.  Gordon Reid missed last Saturday's game after getting stuck at Bristol airport with Glasgow Warriors, but is a replacement prop this week alongside a returning Denford Mutamangira.  Electric winger Craig Gossman is also back from injury, taking his place amongst the substitutes with his brother Kerr.


15. Grant Anderson (capt.), 14. Richard Dalgleish, 13. Robbie Fergusson, 12. Finn Russell, 11. Ross Curle; 10. Scott Wight, 9. Peter Jericevich; 1. George Hunter, 2. Fergus Scott, 3. D'arcy Rae; 4. Callum Templeton, 5. Graham Williamson; 6. James Eddie, 7. Andrew Dunlop, 8. Peter McCallum.


16. Finlay Gillies, 17. Gordon Reid, 18. Denford Mutamangira, 19. Benn Cogley, 20. Murray McConnell, 21. Kerr Gossman, 22. Craig Gossman.

Kick-off 7.30pm.

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