Ravenhill was rocking again as Ulster gave their loyal supporters the perfect festive cheer with a 27-19 win over Leinster in the RaboDirect PRO12 on Friday night
It leaves Ulster as the side to beat - no one was able to in the first half of the campaign.
The victory over Leinster made it the perfect first half - in terms of statistics anyway - with 11 wins from 11 starts.
Yes, the performances at times from Ulster were not perfect - but just when does any coach get that ‘perfect’ display?
There were two narrow wins away in Italy on back-to-back weekends when Ulster played their get out of jail card free twice.
However, when one looks back at the opening of the campaign when Ulster faced three of last season’s semi-finalists in the PRO12 championship, few would have imagined that four months later they would be sitting top of the table, nine points clear and certainly almost guaranteed a place in the championship play-offs this season.
The win away to Cardiff was arguably the best performance of the 11 games in the PRO12.
There has been some rocky moments along the road, but on each occasion, Ulster have dug deep and the character they have displayed has seen them through.
Head coach, Mark Anscombe, has also used 42 players this season, giving everyone an opportunity which is proving vital at times when some key players are ruled out with injury.
No one doubted that Ulster were strong candidates to do well in the PRO12 this season.
But Friday night’s win over Leinster should have finally put all doubts to one side.
This Ulster side are genuine contenders for silverware this season.
A trip to Munster this weekend with a ‘weakened side’ and then a home game against second placed Scarlets will challenge Ulster - but that is exactly what Anscombe and the squad want ahead of a crucial January in Europe.