Henderson to captain Ulster as European rugby returns to Belfast

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Ulster lost 15-26 to the same opposition in a pre-season friendly in August

By Simon Hunter

Iain Henderson will skipper Ulster as they get their European Champions Cup campaign underway at home to Wasps on Friday night.

Henderson, with 77 Ulster caps to his name, will lead a starting XV that features 12 internationals.

He's joined by Kieran Treadwell in the second row, behind Kyle McCall, Rob Herring and Wiehahn Herbst.

The back row consists of Robbie Diack on the blindside, Sean Reidy at openside and the number 8 position occupied by Jean Deysel.

John Cooney and Christian Lealiifano continue their halfback partnership, with Stuart McCloskey and Luke Marshall in midfield.

Louis Ludik comes into the starting XV this weekend with Jacob Stockdale on the other wing and Charles Piutau at 15.


The home side will be hoping to continue their recent form, having won 5 of 6 matches in the new Guinness Pro14.

The visitors meanwhile have lost their last four Aviva Premiership games, but beat Ulster 26-15 in a pre-season friendly at the same venue in August.

Winger Craig Gilroy has warned against complacency, and told Q Radio Sport he has a lot of respect for the opponents.


But the back has confidence the team will keep their momentum going.

Also in the same group are French outfit La Rochelle and Harlequins.

Ulster failed to make the playoff stages of the competition last season.

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