Payne: Ulster’s Win Over Rivals Leinster ‘means a heck of a lot’

peter Lockhartwritten by Peter Lockhart

Despite both teams having already secured places in the knock-out stages of the PRO14, Ulster’s joy following their 14-13 victory over Leinster at the Kingspan Stadium on Saturday was apparent.

Jared Payne, Ulster’s defence coach, said Ulster’s reaction at the final whistle demonstrated how much a win over their provincial rivals meant to the squad.

“It means a lot to these boys. They worked bloody hard for that out on the pitch and to get a win means a heck of a lot. The points don’t really matter but for the effort they put in, to beat any Leinster team, it’s huge.”

Ulster Rugby

Payne also heaped praise on the performances of the Abbey Insurance Academy players who featured on Saturday.

“It’s been awesome. 10 academy players have featured this season. The young guys have come in and are hungry to learn. They’re always wanting to chat at training and learn from the older guys. It’s been a joy to work with them so hopefully they can keep up that attitude going forward.”

It was a memorable day for debutant Marcus Rea in particular, scoring the winning try and collecting the man-of-the-match award after coming off the bench to join his big brother Matthew in the back-row.

“Marcus Rea was class. He really stood up. He has been working really hard behind the scenes so it’s great to see him get a reward for that and get some recognition.”

Dan McFarland’s men will hope to carry this momentum into this Saturday’s showdown with Connacht at the Kingspan stadium.

Payne notes the squad’s desire to give an appropriate send-off to retiring captain Rory Best and club legend, Darren Cave, who will also hang up his boots at the end of this season.

“It’s absolutely massive what Rory (Best) and Cavey have done. To send them off on a high would be something special. Hopefully they can but Besty knows that rugby can be awesome – but it can be pretty evil at the same time.”

“He’ll do what he normally does, front-up every week and put his best foot forward on the pitch.”

Connacht are the only visiting team to win at Kingspan Stadium this season and they will be back in Belfast on Saturday, 4th May at 5.35pm. The winner will face Glasgow away in the PRO14 semi-final.

Author: Peter Lockhart

Love Belfast
Belfast guide to restaurants, bars, nightclubs, concerts, events, hotels, entertainment, special offers, news, gossip, travel, festivals and culture.

Related Articles

Ulster Rugby’s Jacob Stockdale Stands Behind New Kids’ Healthy Eating Programme

Jacob Stockdale joins Danone to  launch revised ‘Eat Like A Champ’ healthy eating programme for Northern Irish primary schools with new guidance on sustainability...

SONI’s Real Rugby Heroes Announced: Three domestic rugby volunteers scoop £1,000 prizes for their clubs

SONI (System Operator for Northern Ireland) runs Northern Ireland’s electricity grid. SONI Ulster Rugby’s annual awards programme, Real Rugby Heroes, which recognises volunteers who...


Ulster Rugby has launched its new membership package - #TogetherUlster – which will replace the traditional Season Ticket offering for the 2020/21 season. Through the...

Leave a Reply

Stay Connected

- Advertisement -

Latest Articles

Volunteers needed in Belfast for Christmas food collection

Two charities providing vital food to people hit by the Covid-19 pandemic are appealing for people in Belfast to help support the UK’s biggest...

Classic Slots fans rejoice as Buffalo Blitz is back, and better than ever!

Buffalo Blitz is a firm favourite amongst the classic Slots lovers, and much to the delight of the fans of the first game, Buffalo...

Give the gift of luxury at Galgorm Spa & Golf Resort

Take the hassle out of Christmas shopping this year and give the gift of luxury at the click of a button with a voucher...


This week, as we celebrate the power of books and rediscover the joy of reading during Book Week NI and Irish Book Week, Belfast...

The Kraken Rum’s ‘Screamfest’ returns in virtual guise this Halloween, with ‘in real life’ video game, Starring Game of Thrones Actor, Iwan Rheon

·         The Kraken Rum has teamed up with Iwan Rheon - best known for his role in Game of Thrones - to become the leading...