Ulster rugby squad confirmed for 2019/20 season

Six new faces have been added to the Ulster rugby squad for 2019/20 season Jack McGrath, Sam Carter, Matt Faddes, Gareth Milasinovich, Bill Johnston and David O’Connor.

Of the 44 players named in the panel, 41 are Irish-qualified and 27 have progressed through Ulster’s player development pathway.

Nine players who started the 2018/19 season in the Abbey Insurance Ulster Academy have signed upgraded contracts ahead of the new season.

Commenting on the squad for the upcoming season, Head Coach, Dan McFarland, said:

“Having a large number of indigenous young players in the squad is incredibly important for the future of Ulster Rugby. Kieran Campbell and his staff in the Academy deserve a lot of credit for their work in bringing through the next generation of talent to the senior squad, which was so evident last season. Our clubs and schools also play a huge part in the development pathway of our young players, providing the basis for crucial early technical and motivational growth.

“It is important that we retain the best of our home-grown talent, many of whom receive attractive offers from other clubs, and we have managed to do that once again with some key re-signings.

“Combined with this core group of Ulster men is the vital input of our overseas players. Having players like Marcell Coetzee in the group has delivered tangible benefits both on and off the field, and I’m confident that Sam Carter and Matt Faddes will also have big impacts.

“We will also welcome the experience and quality of Jack McGrath, and the potential of Gareth Milasinovich, Bill Johnston and David O’Connor into the squad, and I’m looking forward to working with them all.

“The squad is developing nicely. We need to have quality throughout the squad; sometimes that’s down to recruitment, a lot of the time it’s down to bringing the young guys through. Getting a healthy mixture of the two is really important.”

The majority of the squad will commence pre-season training on Monday 1st July.

Ulster Rugby 2019/20 squad

Players developed through the Abbey Insurance Academy or Ulster club system are marked with * and Development players are in italics.

Will Addison,
John Andrew,*
Robert Baloucoune*,
Billy Burns,
Sam Carter,
Marcell Coetzee,
John Cooney,
Angus Curtis*,
Matt Faddes,
Craig Gilroy*,
Iain Henderson*,
Rob Herring,
James Hume*,
Bill Johnston,
Greg Jones*,
Ross Kane*,
Angus Kernohan*,
Michael Lowry*,
Louis Ludik,
Rob Lyttle*,
Luke Marshall*,
Adam McBurney*,
Kyle McCall*,
Zack McCall*,
Stuart McCloskey*,
Jack McGrath,
Gareth Milasinovic,
Marty Moore,
Jordi Murphy,
Alan O’Connor*,
David O’Connor,
Tommy O’Hagan*,
Eric O’Sullivan*,
Tom O’Toole*,
Marcus Rea*,
Matty Rea*,
Sean Reidy,
Clive Ross,
David Shanahan*,
Jonny Stewart*,
Jacob Stockdale*,
Nick Timoney*,
Kieran Treadwell
Andrew Warwick*

Abbey Insurance Ulster Academy 2019/20 Squad Announced

The 2019/20 Abbey Insurance Ulster Rugby Academy Academy squad has also been announced, which includes five new entrants.

Flying back three sensation Aaron Sexton will make the full time switch from athletics to rugby, having recently broken the Irish Schools records for both the 100 and 200 metres. Sexton is also a familiar name in rugby circles, as he was Ulster A’s top try scorer in last year’s Celtic Cup, touching down seven times in six games. The Bangor Grammar School pupil also featured in Ulster’s pre-season friendly versus Gloucester and was the 2017 Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Player of the Year.

Another exciting back three prospect, Conor Rankin, will join the Academy from Campbell College, where he was a pivotal figure in the side that won the 2018 Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Cup.

Recently awarded Danske Bank Ulster Schools’ Player of the Year Tom Stewart is another player joining the Academy following a stellar schools career where the Belfast Royal Academy hooker captained Ulster at U18 level.

Highly rated Irish qualified centre Hayden Hyde will make the move from English Premiership side Harlequins to Ulster, following in the footsteps of Kieran Treadwell and Sam Arnold. Hyde has already represented Ireland at U18 and U19 level.

Following a year in the sub-Academy and a season’s experience in the All Ireland League with Banbridge RFC, prop Callum Reid has been awarded a full time place in the Academy. Reid represented Ulster A in the Celtic Cup last year and was part of the Ireland U20 Six Nations Grand Slam winning team.

After an outstanding season last year which saw Ulster Academy players contribute no less than 111 appearances across the Guinness PRO14 and Heineken Champions Cup, nine players who started the year in the Academy have gone on to earn upgraded contracts; Robert Baloucoune, Angus Curtis, James Hume, Angus Kernohan, Michael Lowry, Zack McCall, Eric O’Sullivan, Tom O’Toole and Marcus Rea.

Commenting on the announcement of the squad, Abbey Insurance Ulster Rugby Academy Manager, Kieran Campbell said:

“Last year was a really successful season in terms of the contribution Academy players made at senior level, which is ultimately what we are here to do – develop players of the requisite quality to represent Ulster and Ireland. 

“We still believe there is significant opportunity to grow again this year and we are excited about the new batch of players joining our programme. Each year we are driving increased standards so I congratulate those who have been awarded a place in the Academy and look forward to seeing how they develop into the future.”


Year 4:

Aaron Hall
Position: Back Row
DOB: 26/06/1998
Height: 193cm
Weight: 98kg
Year 3:
Graham Curtis
Position: Scrum Half
DOB: 12/09/1999
Height: 176cm
Weight: 84kg

Matthew Dalton
Position: 2nd Row
DOB: 16/11/1998
Height: 197cm
Weight: 105kg

Joe Dunleavy
Position: Flanker        
DOB: 22/12/1998
Height: 190cm
Weight: 101kg
Jack Regan
Position: 2nd Row
DOB: 09/05/1997
Height: 197cm
Weight: 108kg

Year 2:

Matthew Agnew
Position: Back Row
DOB: 20/11/1998
Height: 180cm
Weight: 89kg

Azur Allison
Position: Back Row
DOB: 19/04/1999
Height: 192cm
Weight: 95kg
Bruce Houston
Position: Fly Half
DOB: 16/08/1999
Height: 192cm
Weight: 84kg

Iwan Hughes
Position: Back Three
DOB: 06/04/1999
Height: 174cm
Weight: 79kg

David McCann
Position: Back Row
DOB: 13/06/2000
Height: 191cm
Weight: 103kg

Stewart Moore
Position: Centre
DOB: 08/08/1999
Height: 183cm
Weight: 91kg

Year 1:

Hayden Hyde 
Position: Centre
DOB: 15/09/2000

Conor Rankin
Position: Back Three
DOB: 27/05/2001
Height: 186cm
Weight: 83kg

Callum Reid
Position: Prop
DOB: 06/01/1999
Height: 183cm
Weight: 111kg

Aaron Sexton
Position: Back Three
DOB: 24/08/2000
Height: 188cm
Weight: 88kg

Tom Stewart
Position: Hooker
DOB: 11/01/2001
Height: 182cm
Weight: 97kg