Italy look to build on Russia rout against France
TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Italy coach Conor O’Shea warned the Azzurri were looking to build on their rout of Russia as he made three changes to his side for Friday’s World Cup warm-up against France in Paris.
Italy ran in 13 tries for a 85-15 victory in their second warm-up clash at home against Russia after losing 10-29 to Ireland.
“We want to take up were we left off,” said O’Shea, who made three changes among the forwards.
“The victory against Russia gave us good ideas, but it’s the past now. Our next goal is called France.
“It will be a tough and very interesting match for many reasons.
“We want to show our true value by trying to bring home a positive result to get closer and closer to optimal form from a Rugby World Cup perspective.”
Alessandro Zanni replaces David Sisi in the second row, to earn his 113th cap, with Tiziano Pasquali and Andrea Lovotti both dropping to the bench.
Luca Bigi holds his place with Benetton prop Marco Riccioni coming in on his right and Simone Ferrari on the left.
Benetton fly-half Tommaso Allan will earn his 50th cap after a record 17-point haul against the Russians.
Jayden Hayward has been confirmed on the back row along with Matteo Minozzi and Mattia Bellini, who scored five tries between them against Russia.
Jake Polledri, man-of-the-match against Russia, forms the third row alongside Braam Steyn and captain Sergio Parisse, who will earn his 140th cap.
The Argentina-born No 8 is currently joint third with Australian George Gregan as the most capped international on 139, behind New Zealand’s Richie McCaw, 148, and Ireland’s Brian O’Driscoll, 141.
After France the Italians meet England the following Friday for another pre-tournament warm-up, before facing defending champions New Zealand, South Africa, Namibia and Canada in their World Cup group.
The World Cup starts in Japan on September 20 and runs until November 2.
🔵 #FRAvITA: la formazione che venerdì scenderà in campo allo Stade de France ➡ https://t.co/flfNgOSLoA
📺 Per chi non sarà a Parigi, il match verrà trasmesso in diretta su @RaiSport dalle ore 21#insieme #rugbypassioneitaliana pic.twitter.com/2hFGtBebzZ
— Italrugby (@Federugby) August 28, 2019
Italy: 15 Jayden Hayward, 14 Mattia Bellini, 13 Michele Campagnaro, 12 Luca Morisi, 11 Matteo Minozzi, 10 Tommaso Allan, 9 Tito Tebaldi, 8 Sergio Parisse (captain), 7 Jake Polledri, 6 Abraham Steyn, 5 Federico Ruzza, 4 Alessandro Zanni, 3 Marco Riccioni, 2 Luca Bigi, 1 Simone Ferrari.
Replacements: 16 Federico Zani, 17 Andrea Lovotti, 18 Tiziano Pasquali, 19 Dean Budd, 20 Sebastian Negri, 21 Guglielmo Palazzani, 22 Carlo Canna, 23 Tommaso Benvenuti.
Date: Friday, August 30
Venue: Stade de France, St Denis
Kick-off: 21.10 (19.10 GMT)
Referee: Matthew Carley (England)
Assistant referees: Luke Pearce (England), Federico Anselmi (Argentina)
TMO: Graham Hughes (England)