Italy has named two changes to its Starting XV to face England on Saturday from the team which was beaten by France in last weekend’s RBS 6 Nations 2012 opening fixture.
The Italians, who are hosting their first match at Stadio Olimpico, Rome, for the tournament, have replaced centre Alberto Sgarbi and brought in the experienced Gonzalo Canale. They also made one change in the front eight, with second row Cornelius Van Zyl out for Marco Bortolami as they look to battle England’s fresh faced side with an abundance of 6 Nations experience.
Italy will once again be captained by the ever impressive number 8, Sergio Parisse, who was excellent in all he did in Paris last week. With a little more support from his team, Parisse could easily find a better result in this fixture against a transitional England side, on what is his 37th start as captain – he needs just one more to be the most capped Italian captain.
In a vastly experienced looking squad of 22, Italy have only one uncapped player: utility back Luca Morisi, of Crociati Rugby.
Italy Starting XV to Face England, RBS 6 Nations 2012
- 15 Andrea Masi (Aironi Rugby)
- 14 Giovanbattista Venditti (Aironi Rugby)
- 13 Tommaso Benvenuti (Benetton Treviso)
- 12 Gonzalo Canale (Clermont Auvergne)
- 11 Luke McLean (Benetton Treviso)
- 10 Kris Burton (Benetton Treviso)
- 9 Edoardo Gori (Benetton Treviso)
- 1 Andrea Lo Cicero (Racing-Metro 92)
- 2 Leonardo Ghiraldini (Benetton Treviso)
- 3 Martin Castrogiovanni (Leicester Tigers)
- 4 Quintin Geldenhuys (Aironi Rugby)
- 5 Marco Bortolami (Aironi Rugby)
- 6 Alessandro Zanni (Benetton Treviso)
- 7 Robert Barbieri (Benetton Treviso)
- 8 Sergio Parisse (Stade Francais Paris, Capt)
- 16 Tommaso D’Apice (Aironi Rugby)
- 17 Lorenzo Cittadini (Benetton Treviso)
- 18 Antonio Pavanello (Benetton Treviso)
- 19 Mauro Bergamasco (Aironi Rugby)
- 20 Fabio Semenzato (Benetton Treviso)
- 21 Tobias Botes (Benetton Treviso)
- 22 Luca Morisi (Crociati Rugby)*
* Denotes uncapped player.
Italy v England will kick-off at 17:00 CET (16:00 GMT) on the afternoon of Saturday 11th February 2012, in Stadio Olimpico, Rome.