Italy bring in quartet for Uruguay Rugby World Cup tie

Italy coach Kieran Crowley has made four changes to his team to face Uruguay in their second match at the Rugby World Cup

Italy beat Namibia 52-8 in their Pool A opener in a scoreline that flattered the Azzurri. Uruguay impressed in a 27-12 defeat to France, going toe-to-toe at times with their far more illustrious host.

With New Zealand also in their group, the best Italy and Uruguay are likely to achieve is third place and a direct spot at the next World Cup.

“We worked well during the week. We are in a World Cup, every match has its importance, its difficulties and its history,” Crowley said. “The preparation for the match against Uruguay was good. We will be focused on our performance.”

Crowley has brought in Marco Riccioni, Niccolo Cannone, Alessandro Garbisi and Lorenzo Pani, with the latter making his World Cup debut.

But perhaps the biggest surprise is moving Paolo Garbisi — Alessandro’s older brother — from five-eighth to centre. It will be Garbisi’s first test as No. 12.

That allows Ange Capuozzo to play in his best position as fullback, while Tommaso Allan returns to five-eighth.

The Azzurri start with two sets of brothers in a World Cup game for the first time as Lorenzo Cannone — Niccolo’s younger sibling — has again been selected at No. 8.


Italy: Ange Capuozzo, Lorenzo Pani, Juan Ignacio Brex, Paolo Garbisi, Montanna Ioane, Tommaso Allan, Alessandro Garbisi, Lorenzo Cannone, Michele Lamaro (captain), Sebastian Negri, Federico Ruzza, Niccolo Cannone, Marco Riccioni, Giacomo Nicotera, Danilo Fisichetti. Reserves: Luca Bigi, Federico Zani, Pietro Ceccarelli, Dino Lamb, Manuel Zuliani, Giovanni Pettinelli, Alessandro Fusco, Paolo Odogwu.

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