Dey And Godman Return For Ulster

ImageAndy Robinson has welcomed back centre Matt Dey and stand-off Phil Godman into Edinburgh's starting line-up for the Magners League match at Ulster on Friday (kick off 7.30pm) and praised the pair's professionalism.

Dey made his first appearance for the club since September when he made an impact as a replacement during Edinburgh's win over Llanelli Scarlets while Scotland international Godman has been omitted from the starting line-up for five games.

Nevertheless Edinburgh head coach Andy Robinson has opted for experience by bringing in Dey, 26, and 25-year-old Godman for the potentially tricky trip to Ravenhill.

Godman swaps places with David Blair, 22, on the bench while Dey comes in for 24-year-old John Houston, who is ruled out for the match with a dead leg.

And Robinson has been pleased with the attitude shown by the duo towards earning their places back in the side.

Robinson said: 'the two players have worked really hard and therefore now when they are handed opportunities they have to take them. The key to getting into the team is when you are performing that you play well

"It is hard for players when they are not getting the starts they probably would have got last year. But what is important for them is that they understand that by working hard they can get back into the team.

"Now they are in the side though it is not about them switching off, but instead pushing up some more gears in order to stay there."

Houston's withdrawal is one of four changes to the line-up that defeated the Scarlets in Robinson's first win in charge of the club with Hugo Southwell (sprained ankle) replaced by Ben Cairns at full-back and Scotland prop Gavin Kerr reclaiming the number three shirt.

Scotland winger Simon Webster is unavailable because of a back injury, so former Ulster favourite Andrew Maxwell continues in the number 11 shirt against his old club.

Meanwhile, Alistair Warnock, who has been playing for club side Currie, and Craig Hamilton are named amongst the replacements.

Robinson revealed he was pleased to be able to freshen up the squad, although acknowledged that injuries always create selection dilemmas.

He said: "It is disappointing when you get injuries, but that is part of the ferocity of the games we have played in the Magners League and the Heineken Cup. Now it is a case of players, who have been waiting for opportunities, to take them.

"When we played at Leicester we rested Ross Rennie and he responded well to that. There will be times when we will be resting players and there will be times when we have to make difficult decisions when it comes to managing our players."

Edinburgh Rugby Club squad to play Ulster at Ravenhill (Friday 30 November, kick-off 7.30pm)
15 Ben Cairns
14 Andrew Turnbull
13 Nick De Luca
12 Matt Dey
11 Andrew Maxwell
10 Phil Godman
9 Mike Blair (captain)
1 Allan Jacobsen
2 Ross Ford
3 Gavin Kerr
4 Matt Mustchin
5 Ben Gissing
6 Roland Reid
7 Ross Rennie
8 David Callam
Substitutes: Andrew Kelly, Augusto Allori, Craig Hamilton, Simon Cross, Ben Meyer, David Blair*, Alistair Warnock.
*= Member of Scottish Rugby's Senior National Academy