Nigel Melville knows it'll be tough in Ulster, and the Gloucester director of rugby is well aware of how important the Friday night game at Ravenhill is to his side's chances of Heineken Cup quarter-final qualification.
Gloucester currently sit in second place in pool six on 13 points, one point behind leaders Stade Francais, who they place at Kingsholm on Sunday 16 January. The West Country club know that two wins from the next two games would see them top the group, but defeat in Ulster could end their chances.
Commenting on www.gloucesterrugbyclub.com Melville said: "Of course it's going to be hard out there. They've got a superb record at home, just like all of the Irish provinces. It looks like the wind and rain will be in force, but we know that we have to win. We believe that we can qualify for the knock-out stages, but to keep us in control we have to get the points in Ireland."
Melville and coach Dean Ryan recall hooker James Parkes, in place of Mefin Davies, who has played the last three games for Gloucester. Parkes and Academy player Rob Elloway are Gloucester's last two registered hookers, after long term injuries to Chris Fortey and Olivier Azam.
Elsewhere in the line-up Simon Amor returns to the side at stand-off with Henry Paul moving to inside centre. James Bailey replaces Seti Kiole on the left wing, as the Tongan is not registered for European competition.
Absent through injury are Duncan McRae (knee - expected return 16/22 January), Chris Fortey (ankle - long term), Olivier Azam (shoulder - February/March), James Simpson-Daniel (shoulder - mid/end of January), Oliver Morgan (wrist - mid-January), Rory Teague (thumb - end of January), Brad Davies (ankle - week by week) and James Merriman (knee - February).
15. Jon Goodridge
14. Marcel Garvey
13. Terry Fanolua
12. Henry Paul
11. James Bailey
10. Simon Amor
9. Andy Gomarsall
1. Christo Bezuidenhout
2. James Parkes
3. Phil Vickery
4. Adam Eustace
5. Alex Brown
6. Jake Boer (c)
7. Andy Hazell
8. Adam Balding
16. Rob Elloway, 17. Terry Sigley, 18. Nick Wood, 19. Peter Buxton, 20. James Forrester, 21. Alex Page, 22. Nathan Mauger
Ahead of the visit of Northampton Saints to Kingsholm in the Aviva Premiership on Saturday (kick off 3:15pm), Head Coach Laurie Fisher admitted that it's good to have more selection options as the RBS Six Nations takes a break.
Fresh from his first training session with the Cherry and Whites, new arrival Brendan Macken spoke exclusively to GRTV ahead of his time at Kingsholm. The Leinsterman is keen to experience Kingsholm and the rugby heritage at Gloucester.
After a good start, and dominating for long periods at the Ricoh, skipper Tom Savage spoke after the Wasps defeat to GRTV about the small things that Gloucester have to work on as well as focussing on some of the positives.
Gloucester Rugby will take on Wasps on Sunday in their first ever visit in the Aviva Premiership to the Ricoh Arena. Speaking to the local media today, Director of Rugby David Humphreys previewed the game as well as giving an update on the injured Henry Trinder.
Following the 48-10 Aviva Premiership win over London Welsh on Saturday, Dan Murphy praised his team mates for battling right up to the very last minute in difficult conditions and maintaining the momentum that the team have built in 2015.
Gloucester Rugby are able to call upon the quartet of players who have been on RBS Six Nations duty in recent weeks as they welcome Northampton Saints to Kingsholm for the latest round of Aviva Premiership action.
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