IT is true to say that French clubs have taken their time to warm to the Heineken Cup. It is perhaps in their nature to see everything outside France as something of inferior value.
Castres are out of the running for the quarter-finals. They have nothing to play for, but the pride of defending their castle.
Therein lies the rub. No matter the significance of the occasion, the Castres players will have to walk the streets of their town. They have to put their shoulders to these wheels.
Ulster cannot call on Johann Muller or Stephen Ferris to lead their forward pack. The onus will fall on others, like the indestructible Rory Best and 20-year-old Iain Henderson.
Castres have won three of their last four home games in the Heineken Cup and Ulster have never won in 14 previous visits to France in the Heineken.
CASTRES OLYMPIQUE v ULSTER
TOMORROW, SKY SPORTS 3, KO 1.35