Andrew Trimble set to return for Ulster after hand injury

Andrew Trimble
Andrew Trimble has won 70 caps for Ireland
Pro12: Ulster v Cardiff Blues
Venue: Kingspan Stadium, Belfast Date: Friday, 7 April Kick-off: 19:35 BST
Coverage: Live on BBC Two NI and the BBC Sport website

Andrew Trimble is set to return after injury in Friday's Pro12 game against Cardiff Blues at Kingspan Stadium.

The Ireland wing was out of action for a month after undergoing surgery on a hand injury sustained against Treviso.

Wiehahn Herbst has come through the return to play protocols but lock Pete Browne is out for three to four weeks.

Meanwhile back-row forward Marcell Coetzee is expected to be fit for the start of next season as his knee injury is not as bad as first feared.

Ruan Pienaar has been given a clean bill of health while Louis Ludik and Stuart McCloskey came through Ulster A's game against Leinster A last weekend unscathed.

Browne is ruled out with a shoulder complaint, while prop Kyle McCall will be absent for another four to five weeks.

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Ulster Head Coach Neil Doak says Cardiff will provide a stiff challenge

Another front-rower Rodney Ah You is available after serving a one-week ban for his red card against the Dragons.

Wing Tommy Bowe remains a long-term absentee as he continues to recover from a broken ankle.

Ulster emerged 35-22 victors the last time they took on the Blues at the Arms Park in early December and have now put together a run of six successive wins.

The Irish province occupy fourth place in the Pro12 table with four sets of fixtures remaining, a position they will hope to retain to secure a place in the end-of-season semi-final play-offs.

Following their penultimate home game of the season on Friday, Ulster face testing encounters with the top three sides in the standings, away to Munster and Ospreys, then home to Leinster.

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