STEPHEN FERRIS has hit out at former Ireland strength and conditioning coach Mike McGurn, who questioned his ability to come back from a series of injuries last November.
The Ulster, Ireland and Lions flanker has played just three times this season and is currently recovering from the ankle surgery he underwent last month. He is targeting a return for mid-February and is hoping to play some part in Ireland's Six Nations campaign.
McGurn asserted his belief that the 27-year-old's style of play, strength and power meant that his body is "not able to handle the freakish pressure that he is putting on (his) joints".
But in an exclusive interview with the Irish Independent, Ferris hit back, saying he believed he has been an unfortunate victim of bad luck and would be better than ever when he returned.
"People can say and write what they like, but at the end of the day they don't know me," said Ferris (left).
"Reading that article, it didn't make me angry, but that is somebody that I've worked with and I think he should have kept his opinions to himself. "That's my opinion and I know a lot of other people who share that opinion.
"I'm the strongest I've ever been in the gym and personally I feel absolutely fantastic, so I just can't wait to get back out there. When I do get back out there, I think I'll be better than I was when I left off."