Ulster loose head prop Callum Black is enjoying the new scrum laws which were brought in this season.
Black started last week’s bonus point win over Cardiff and will be at the coal face again as Ulster travel to the Scarlets.
“It was good to get a start especially after being on the bench for a few weeks, it was good to get a hit out from the start and show what I’m about from the start of the game,” said Black.
The front row is always described as the dark arts but Black sheds light on what is happening under the new laws which he feels benefits Ulster.
“The scrum was very pleasing and it’s an area we targeted against Cardiff and we thought we could get the upper hand, previously we had come up against a few tough packs Ospreys, Leicester and Montpellier, week by week we take it seriously and do our homework on all the teams we play.
“It has taken a bit to get used to, we found out at the end of last season about the new laws and we did a lot of work early on, myself being a shorter prop it kind of suits me and I’m managing to pick up the technique pretty quickly.
“There is a bit less of a hit at the scrum but the weight and power coming through the scrum is a lot and you’re in the scrum a lot longer so it does take a lot out of your legs but the impact has come down.
“You’ve got to be in a good body position and be low and your technique has to spot on because if you go into a scrum in a bad position the pack can come at you straight away.”
“Being shorter against the bigger tight heads you’re in a good body position and you’re under him straight away, before the rule change a big tight head would have just hit you and try to get over you straight away so the new rules are definitely a positive for me.”
Ulster are affected by international call ups and injury this week but Black has faith that the squad are good enough to keep their winning run going.
“I think we are fortunate with the squad we have and in training we’re always mixing the formation or packs and I think how ever comes in will do a job,” he added.
“Whether Rory is at hooker one week and then you have Rob Herring and Niall Annett so we’re lucky we have got good hooker , Tom could be away this week so we have myself, John and Ricky.”
“Dan is away and were unlucky with injuries to Johan and Iain I’m sure whoever is pickedwill do a good job.”
“When Ulster are doing well more guys are going to go into the international squad, everybody when they get their chance at starting want to put their case forward and retain their spot.”
Black is expecting a tough night at the office especially if Simon Easterby’s men reproduce their European form!
“We have done a lot of homework on them already, in the Heineken Cup they had a good win against Harlequins and a draw with Racing, we know we’re up against a good side and we won’t be taking it easy at all, we respect them as a good side and we’ll have to be on our money to win there.”
“I started the away game last year, I’ve played there a few times so I know what to expect.”
This will be Ulster’s last game until November 22 and Black acknowledges it’s paramount to sign of with a victory.
“In the first game we weren’t on the money, against Glasgow if we had of finished our chances we’d have finished our chances we won have easily won, the last six games we’ve went on a winning run and the confidence is good and we go into every game we knowing we can win.”
“We’re third in the league and this is the last big game and we have to throw everything into it cause we have a rest and we’ll be gunning for a good rest.”