Chris Henry returns to playing with Ulster

Chris Henry pictured during Captain's Run on Thursday
Chris Henry pictured during Captain's Run on Thursday

Ulster Rugby has confirmed Chris Henry has been selected as a replacement for Friday night’s game against Cardiff Blues.

Chris suffered a mini-stroke in November and underwent heart surgery to repair a defect in his heart wall.

He has steadily increased his involvement with the squad over the past two months and following a consultation with his surgeon in Dublin this week he has been cleared for full participation.

Commenting on the news, Ulster Head Coach, Neil Doak, said: “I am absolutely delighted that Chris will be involved in this evening’s match and his recovery gives everyone at Ulster Rugby a massive boost.

“He is a very popular member of the squad and he has worked extremely hard since his surgery to get back to full fitness.

“While he was cleared to play earlier in the week, we wanted to wait until today to confirm his involvement, so that he could be completely focused on his return to play.

“Wearing the Ulster jersey means a great deal to Chris and I know with what he has been through over the past four months that tonight will be extra special for him.

“I also know that the crowd will give him a huge reception if and when he takes to the pitch. For the coaches and players of Ulster Rugby, it is just great to have him back.”

Ulster team: L Ludik; C Gilroy, D Cave (Captain), S Olding, M Allen, P Jackson, R Pienaar; C Black, R Herring, W Herbst, D Tuohy, F Van der Merwe, I Henderson, C Ross, N Williams

Replacements: J Andrew, A Warwick, B Ross, R Diack, C Henry, P Marshall, I Humphreys, R Scholes.