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Italy Under-20s call on experience for France contest

Italy Under-20s call on experience for France contest

Alessandro Garbisi Italy U20s

A relatively experienced Italy Under-20s side has been named for their first match of the 2022 Six Nations Under-20s against France on Friday evening.

No fewer than eight of the starting XV featured in last year’s Six Nations Under-20s, as coach Massimo Brunello opts for as much continuity as possible from the side that finished fifth in the table in 2021.

There is a particularly familiar name at scrum-half, as Alessandro Garbisi – younger brother of first-choice fly-half for the senior side, Paolo – is handed the No.9 jersey and forms a half-back pairing with another returner from 2021, Nicolò Teneggi.

Inside centre Arturo Fusari and winger Lorenzo Pani are the other backs heading into their second Six Nations Under-20s, while two-thirds of the back row – openside flanker Ross Michael Vintcent and No.8 Giacomo Ferrari, who skippers the side – also have previous Championship experience.

The same can be said of lock Riccardo Andreoli and loosehead prop Luca Rizzoli, with coach Brunello believing he has the right blend to take on Les Bleuets – who beat them 13-11 as Azzurrini kicker Manfredi Albanese missed a late penalty in 2021 – in Round 1.

“We are expecting a combative France, driven by a crowd that as always in their home will be fired up and very numerous,” said Brunello.

“We know it will be very hard, for our part we have prepared for the match by focusing on our identity and on our game, in particular the defensive solidity: the goal is to be competitive from the first to the last minute, against every opponent, up to the end of the Championship.

“As for the French strengths – they are certainly very effective at winning the phases in the forwards.

“Against us last year however they could not exploit this characteristic thanks to our performance in the same sector. Without that missed kick at the end, we would have won a match played at the same level.

“It is clear that against an opponent of this depth we will need a great match from everyone, but we feel ready and we want to take the field to prove it.”

Italy Under-20s team to face France in 2022 Six Nations Under-20s Round 1:
15 MEY Francois Carlo (HBS Colorno)
14 PANI Lorenzo (Benetton Rugby Treviso Srl)
13 PASSARELLA Dewi (Ruggers Tarvisium)
12 FUSARI Arturo (Fiamme Oro Rugby)
11 LAZZARIN Filippo (Petrarca Rugby)
10 TENEGGI Nicolò (Valorugby Emilia)
9 GARBISI Alessandro (Mogliano Rugby 1969 Ssd Arl)
8 FERRARI Giacomo (Unione Rugby Capitolina) – captain
7 VINTCENT Ross Michael (Accademia Nazionale Ivan Francescato)
6 ODIASE David (HBS Colorno)
5 ANDREOLI Riccardo (FEMI-CZ Rovigo)
4 ORTOMBINA Alessandro (Valorugby Emilia)
3 GENOVESE Riccardo (Cus Torino)
2 SCRAMONCIN Tommaso (Petrarca Rugby)
1 RIZZOLI Luca (Unione Rugby Capitolina)
16 BONAN Mattia (Rugby Rovigo Delta Srl Ssd)
17 BIZZOTTO Valerio (Rugby Bassano 1976)
18 BERNARDINELLO Matteo (Petrarca Rugby)
19 CENEDESE Giovanni (Villorba Rugby)
20 BERLESE Carlos (Ruggers Tarvisium Asd)
21 TOMASELLI Gianluca (G.S. Fiamme Oro Rugby Roma)
22 FORONCELLI Paul Marie (Rangers Vicenza)
23 SANTE Giovanni (Mogliano Rugby 1969)