Best confirmed as Ulster captain

Tue, 29 Aug 2017 18:26
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NEWS: Director of Rugby Les Kiss has announced that Rory Best will lead Ulster during the 2017/18 season.

Best, who has played 198 times for his home Province, returns to a position that he first held from 2007 to 2011.

The 35-year-old brings immense experience to the role, having previously had two stints as captain of Ulster, as well as considerable experience of leading both Ireland and the British & Irish Lions.

Best took over the Ireland captaincy 18 months ago and oversaw a historic run of results last year as they registered a first Test victory on South African soil in June followed by a first-ever win over New Zealand in November. Later that month, he won his 100th international cap in a win over Australia.

A two-time British & Irish Lions tourist, Best led midweek sides on both the 2013 tour to Australia and again in New Zealand earlier this year.

"It's a huge honour to captain my home Province again. To play for Ulster fills me with immense pride and that feeling is amplified when I lead the team out.

"I'll be in the privileged position of having an experienced group of players supporting me, all of whom have represented Ulster for a number of years and are superb leaders in their own right.

"The standard of rugby in the Pro14 and the Champions Cup is improving each year and the players are looking forward to the challenges ahead in both competitions. We're committed to working hard each week to improve every aspect of our game and hopefully this will increase our chances of success."

Kiss paid tribute to his new skipper, adding: "Rory is an exceptional ambassador for Ulster both on and off the pitch. To have achieved what he has in the game is testament to his qualities as a player and a person.

"It's brilliant for us to be in a position to call upon someone with his experience and proven leadership ability. He has recent experience of captaining Ireland and the Lions in massive games and that has further enhanced his leadership qualities, meaning he's better equipped than ever before to lead us.

"We have a structure in place that will enable us to call upon strong leaders throughout the season, regardless of injuries and international call-ups. Indeed, Chris Henry, who has led the team on many occasions, will captain us on Friday against the Cheetahs. I'm looking forward to working with Rory and the other senior players to create a culture that challenges us to improve week by week."

There are currently no matches being played
Fri, 23 March 2018
Connacht v Edinburgh 22h00 Sportsground
Munster v Scarlets 22h00 Thomond Park
Dragons v Cheetahs 22h00 Rodney Parade
Ospreys v Leinster 22h00 Liberty Stadium
Cardiff Blues v Ulster 22h00 Cardiff Arms Park
Glasgow Warriors v Zebre 22h00 Scotstoun
Kings v Treviso 22h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Crusaders v Bulls 06h35 Christchurch
Rebels v Sharks 08h45 Melbourne
Bath v Exeter Chiefs 19h45 Recreation Ground
Sat, 24 March 2018
Sunwolves v Chiefs 04h15 Tokyo
Hurricanes v Highlanders 06h35 Wellington
Saracens v Harlequins 15h00 London
London Irish v Gloucester 15h00 Madejski Stadium
Sale Sharks v Worcester Warriors 15h00 AJ Bell Stadium
Stormers v Reds 15h15 Newlands
Newcastle Falcons v Northampton Saints 17h30 Kingston Park
Jaguares v Lions 21h40 Estadio Jose Amalfitani
Sun, 25 March 2018
Leicester Tigers v Wasps 15h00 Welford Road
Sun, 18 March 2018
Waratahs v Rebels 51 | 27
Sat, 17 March 2018
Jaguares v Reds 7 | 18
Wales v France 14 | 13
Lions v Sunwolves 40 | 38
England v Ireland 15 | 24
Stormers v Blues 37 | 20
Italy v Scotland 27 | 29
Brumbies v Sharks 24 | 17
Highlanders v Crusaders 25 | 17
Fri, 16 March 2018
Cardiff Blues v Treviso 31 | 25
Edinburgh v Munster 12 | 6
Chiefs v Bulls 41 | 28
Sun, 11 March 2018
Wales v Italy 38 | 14
Sat, 10 March 2018
Jaguares v Waratahs 38 | 28
France v England 22 | 16
Pool A
Team P W D L Pts
Glasgow Warriors 16 13 1 2 65
Munster 17 10 0 7 54
Cheetahs 17 9 0 8 47
Cardiff Blues 17 9 0 8 42
Connacht 17 6 0 11 33
Ospreys 16 6 0 10 30
Zebre 16 4 0 12 22
Pool B
Team P W D L Pts
Leinster 17 13 1 3 64
Scarlets 17 12 1 4 61
Edinburgh 17 12 0 5 55
Ulster 16 9 1 6 46
Treviso 17 8 0 9 40
Dragons 17 2 2 13 17
Kings 17 1 0 16 9