Sam Carter taking heart from Ulster form

Ulster’s pack has gone head-to-head with Leinster, Clermont and Northampton Saints in three of their last four matches and came out top in all of them.

Friday, 7th January 2022, 7:00 am

The forwards face another huge challenge tomorrow night as they travel to Thomond Park to face a Munster side looking to breathe new life into their United Rugby Championship campaign.

Lock Sam Carter, capped 16 times by Australia, believes the victories against three of Europe’s big guns have started to earn Ulster’s pack respect.

“They are three big packs and three tough packs to play, that is not why we are doing it - we are doing it to win and we want to create an environment here where we have a winning culture and play stunning rugby as a team,” he said.

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Ulster's Sam Carter. Photo by John Dickson / Dicksondigital

“Any news we can create is a bonus but it also puts a target on your head as well so it is something that we have to live up to.

“The rent is due every week and you have to live up to that expectation and keep putting those performances on, we don’t want to get ahead of ourselves.”

Carter joined Ulster in 2019 from the ACT Brumbies and has been impressed with the work Ulster’s forwards have on and off the field.

“I reckon it is a little bit of everything,” he said.

“A couple of years ago when I first came in we were good but we really didn’t have the reputation of being one of those big packs around Europe.

“A lot of work has gone into that, a lot of honesty in review meetings and preview meetings and just a lot of hard work.”

It has been seven years since Ulster have won at Thomond Park and Carter knows the forward battle will be paramount.

“They pride themselves on their set-piece and their physicality around the breakdown, especially down in Limerick - that’s a tough task for us,” he said.

“But for where we want to be and what we want to create as our own marker, these are the packs that you have to go up against and play your best footy. We hadn’t won in Leinster in a number of years, we hadn’t won in Clermont and we were able to knock-off those two.”

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