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Muller-light Ulster can still burn faltering Dragons

IT hasn't taken Ulster's new coach Mark Anscombe too long to make his opinion known to Ireland coach Declan Kidney. He sees Chris Henry as the ideal replacement for Seán O'Brien.

Anscombe also sees his stock rising as Ulster take the only unbeaten record in Europe on the road to one of the more hostile environments in British rugby.

Number eight Roger Wilson and prop Declan Fitzpatrick are ready. The torrent of positives make for a content camp, except for the thumb injury that takes captain Johann Muller out of the game frame for eight weeks. How will they cope without their go-to man?

Much of the responsibility will fall on the shoulders of hooker Rory Best and half-back Ruan Pienaar.

The Dragons look like they are ripe to be picked off. They have won one of their last seven. Worse again, they have taken an Irish scalp just once in their last 14 attempts. But Anscombe will remind his players they came a cropper at this venue last season. Yes, Ulster were burned by the Dragons then. It shouldn't happen again.



The Dragons: T Prydie; W Harries, A Hughes, A Tuilagi, T Chavhanga; L Robling, J Evans; O Evans, S Jones, N Buck, A Jones, R Sidoli, T Brown, J Groves (capt), T Faletau.
Ulster: T Bowe; A Trimble, D Cave, P Wallace, C Gilroy; R Pienaar, P Marshall; T Court, R Best, D Fitzpatrick, L Stevenson, D Tuohy, I Henderson, C Henry (capt), N Williams.



The Dragons v Ulster
Rodney Parade, tonight, 7.05 (lIVE BBC2)

Verdict: Ulster.


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