Ulster Rugby head coach Dan McFarland believes the signing of experienced prop Rory Sutherland will have a sizeable impact on their season.

The British and Irish Lion, 30, joins with 27 appearances in EPCR competitions to his name and bolsters Ulster’s squad, the strength of which will be tested when their Heineken Champions Cup campaign gets underway at Sale Sharks on December 11.

McFarland says Scottish international Sutherland will provide further prowess in the front row, which will aid Ulster both on the pitch and off it.

“Myself, Roddy Grant, Jonny Bell and Jonny Petrie have all worked with Rory at some point in his career and know he will add quality on the field and bring an invaluable level of experience and mindset that our young props can squeeze every drop out of,” he told the Irish province’s official website.

“Having Rory’s level of competitiveness at scrum training is going to test and teach the very best we have, something as a scrum coach and former prop I have experienced first-hand and am now excited to be a part of.”

Sutherland’s most recent Heineken Champions Cup match was a 16-15 pool stage victory with Edinburgh Rugby at Sale Sharks in the 2020-21 pool stage, his fourth game in EPCR’s leading competition.