In making sweeping changes, Ulster head coach, Mark Anscombe has handed young Banbridge player, Ian Porter his first start in the RaboDirect PRO12 when Glasgow Warriors are the visitors to Ravenhillon Friday night.
Porter - who has made nine previous appearances for Ulster from the bench - was given the nod ahead of Paul Marshall in the pivotal scrumhalf position.
It was one of seven changes to the side, two of them positional.
A forced call was bringing Michael Allen on to the wing for the now injured Andrew Trimble who is out for at least four weeks.
Irish international Trimble will undergo surgery on a finger he injured last week in the loss to the Dragons in Newport.
In the midfield, Luke Marshall switches to the inside role this week, with Darren Cave coming into the side at No 13, but there is no place for young gun, Chris Farrell.
Up front, Declan Fitzpatrick starts at tighthead, in spite of the fact the man he replaces, Ricky Lutton, was one of the stand out performers last week in an poor display from the Irish Province.
With Nick Williams returning to the backrow at No 8, Roger Wilson moves to blindside and Sean Doyle to open.
It means no spot for Robbie Diack in the squad with Chris Henry on the bench as backrow cover.
Tom Court, who continues to recover from a knock to a knee, is again named on the replacements as is rising start, Iain Henderson, who gets his first call to the Ulster matchday squad.
Henderson has been under the Irish Player Management Programme and if, as expected, he comes off the bench it will be his first Ulster start this season.
It is the selection of Porter at scrumhalf which will have most eyebrows raised. although the Banbridge man is deserving of his place.
Remarkably, just over a year ago, Porter opted not to following the professional rugby pathway, the ex Queen’s University student, opting to pursure a career in engingeering.
That was to do more with not getting the opportunities at scrumhalf than anything else.
However, he had second thoughts over the summer and the Ulster Academy gradutate who was the Ulster club player of the year in 2009, decided to return to the Province on a six-month development contract at the start of the current season.
Porter came on in the second half of the pre-season friendly against Leinster at Ravenhill last month and gave an impressive display.
He also scored the vital try which secured a 21-19 win in the game and it was a performance which was noted by head coach Anscombe after the game.
It will be Porter’s 10th appearance for Ulster in the PRO12 when he starts tonight in what is a massive occasion for the club as they play their first game in the new-look Ravenhill following the completion of part of the redevelopment programme at the famous ground.
That will certainly act as one incentive for Ulster to want to produce a performance to be proud of and not one to be criticised like last week’s paultry offering in Newport when losing 15-8 to the Dragons.
That defeat and moreso the performance has certainly contributed to the changes made by the management as they look to get the season kick-started properly. There can be no opening night errors like there was last week in Wales, although Ulster did return with a losing bonus point.
It will not be an easy night for the home side with Glasgow Warriors as the visitors.
They finished in the top four of the campaign last year and came so agonisingly close to defeating Leinster in the PRO12 Championship semi-final.
They also look to be, on paper, the side which has strenghtened the most during the summer recess.
Buoyed by a win at home last week against Cardiff Blues, the Scots are coming to Belfast with their tails up and confident of spoililng the anticipated occasion at Ravenhill where close to 13,000 are expected to attend the game.
Anscombe is well aware of the task ahead of his side.
“They have a strong bib squad so we now they are one of the teams to watch this year.
“It does not get any easier and we are up for a tough one on Friday night,” he said.
Obviously Ulster want to get back on track even it if tonight is only round two of the campaign.
“Things did not go as we obviously planned last week, we simply did not front up nor did we preform.
“There were a lot of contributing factors to the overall end result, but crucially for us, we did not play well and that is what we had to recognise.
“But at the same time we were a good team last year, we finished top and we have not become a bad team just because of one defeat.
“There were certain facets we did not do well on last week, but we just did not use our set piece as well as we could and the quality of the ball from that set piece was poor. It did not give us our launch pad as was required.
“A good squad is one that can respond to poor performances and bounce back. What we have to do is to right the wrongs and get our accuracy a bit better than it was last week. If we can get that right then we can get a reasonable performance.”
He added: “The guys are excited about getting back to Belfast and the new look Ravenhill, we have to make sure we use it to our advantage.”
p Last night limited tickets were still available, but the game was close to a sell-out.