Wallace wary of Glasgow threat

VETERAN Paddy Wallace is wary of Glasgow’s challenge at Ravenhill this evening with Ulster aiming to gain a boost before next week’s European travails.

Wallace reckons Ulster, sitting fourth in the Magners League, must win their home games but Glasgow will pose quite a threat.

“I remember sitting in the stands last season with the wind and rain belting down and Glasgow played the perfect game to beat us. They have a great record in Belfast, and regardless of their current position in the table, they will be quite a force to deal with,” said Wallace, who believes Ulster have still plenty to work on following their 15-15 draw with Connacht last week.

“There are a few positives we can take from last week, but we also know that we can make improvements. But I suppose at this stage of the season, you don’t want to be at an optimum anyway.”

Wallace has welcomed newcomer’s Ruan Pienaar’s debut. “It’s very exciting for Ruan and us. I have watched him carefully in training and he oozes class and is a very accurate place-kicker.

“He has gelled seamlessly with the squad and with a few of his Sharks’ buddies here, he will shown the ropes as to what our aims are.”

Wallace moves back to midfield, Niall O’Connor starts at number 10 with Robbie Diack filling in the gap in the back-row for the injured Stephen Ferris.

The only real surprise is on the bench where club player Alan Whitten is named as one of the front-row replacements.

Glasgow head coach Sean Lineen has called on his charges to keep their belief as they strive for improvement in the Magners League.

“The players have been doing a lot of good things in the games we’ve played so far,’’ Lineen said. “It would be difficult if we couldn’t pinpoint what wasn’t going up to speed.

“We can’t fault the players’ effort at all, it’s just decisions and some skills at key times not coming off.

“It’s a very young forward pack. We’re making errors and we’re getting punished for them, and you’d expect that. But as long as we’re learning, that’s the key.”

Looking ahead to the trip to Ravenhill, the former Scotland Grand Slam winner is expecting a ferocious battle.

“I’m expecting a really physical affair. We’ve had a bit of good fortune over there in the last couple of years but they’ve recruited well and have started the campaign well.”

ULSTER: J Smith; A Trimble, D Cave, P Wallace, S Danielli; N O’Connor, R Pienaar; B Young, R Best, capt, T Court, D Tuohy, J Muller, P Wannenburg, R Diack, C Henry.

Replacements: N Brady, P McAllister, A Whitten, T Barker, W Faloon , P Marshall, I Whitten.

GLASGOW: B Stortoni; DTH van der Merwe, M Evans, G Morrison, F Aramburu, D Weir, C Gregor; J Welsh, F Thomson, M Low, T Ryder, R Gray, R Harley, J Barclay (capt), Re Vernon.

Replacements: P MacArthur, R Grant, E Kalman, A Muldowney, C Forrester, H Pyrgos, R Jackson, R Dewey

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