Olding dealt Six Nations blow as Gilroy returns
Stuart Olding's slim chances of a call-up to the Irish Six Nations squad have been scuppered when his injury comeback lasted just one game before being ruled out for a fortnight with an elbow issue.
However, ahead of their crucial Pro12 clash with Glasgow Warriors this weekend, play-off-chasing Ulster will be boosted by the release of Irish quartet Craig Gilroy, the hat-trick hero from Rome last weekend, Luke Marshall, Stuart McCloskey and Tommy Bowe.
Les Kiss is also guardedly optimistic that Charles Piutau and Darren Cave will be available for the match at Kingspan Stadium after shipping knocks in last weekend's Edinburgh win.
Ruan Pienaar and Rob Herring are both in contention to feature after knee injuries. Out-half Brett Herron is also fit again, although Peter Nelson impressed there last week after a lengthy spell on the sidelines.
Forwards Andy Warwick, Alan O'Connor, Robbie Diack and Kieran Treadwell will be monitored this week ahead of a significant clash for two teams eyeing up play-off berths this season.
Ballynahinch club man Nelson, who suffered a horrific injury 14 months ago when he dislocated his midfoot against Edinburgh, was delighted to finally make his return against the same opponents.
"It was such a long road back and there were a lot of nerves during the week but some of the rugby we played and tries we scored made it much easier," said Nelson, as his side seek to build on the five-point, 28-14 win.
"I'm out of contract this summer so I know I have to impress. I have played a lot of my rugby at out-half but it doesn't bother me where I play."