March 2nd, 2019

Dragons v Ulster: The visitors to take the points at Rodney Parade

By Angus Macartney

 

The two sides come into this encounter with contrasting fortunes. Under McFarland, Ulster fans have reasons to be optimistic for a playoff spot. Whereas the Dragons, are struggling down at the bottom of the table.

That said, Ulster can’t expect to have it all their own way on Sunday. The hosts have put in some good performances at home this season and will look to make a statement on their final home match of the Pro 14 season.

 

Last week’s review:

 

The Dragons travelled to Italy for what on paper was a match they would have marked as an opportunity to pick up points. As it transpired, they were torn apart by a Treviso side high on confidence with the final result 57-7.

Dragons coach, Jones, has made wholesale changes as they look for a bounce-back result. There are nine changes in personnel including the Wales winger Hallam Amos.

On the other hand, Ulster dismantled Zebre scoring tries for fun racing to a 54-7 win. Rob Lyttle, the Ulster wing, had the kicking duties and he was up to the task landing all but one of his conversions.

The visitors welcome back the first choice halfback partnership. Billy Burns returns from injury and John Cooney is released from Irish duty.

 

Predictions:

 

The Ulster side looks to have a very balanced feel to it. The experience of Cave and McCloskey in the centre is met with the youth and flair of Lyttle and Baloucoune on the wings.

They will fancy their chances of leaving Newport with the win and maximum points.

 

Tip:

 

Rob Herring anytime:

 

The Ulster hooker scored a hat trick last week and has been the beneficiary of a powerful Ulster maul.

He leads from the front and will be a threat to the Dragons line.