Italy Makes Seven Changes For Wales Test

Italy head coach Jacques Brunel has announced the match day squad that will face Wales on Saturday at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff in third and final Test match of preparation for the Rugby World Cup in 2015.   Brunel has made seven changes to the starting lineup from last week’s second Test against Scotland at Murrayfield on Saturday.  Skipper Sergio Parisse, who has missed the last three matches for the national team, is back at the helm of the Azzurri and the scrum with jersey number eight.

Alongside him in the loose trio are Francesco Minto and Alessandro Zanni.  Lock Quintin Geldenhuys is also back after missing the second Scotland fixture.  The third change in the scrum is at loosehead prop, with Michele Rizzo coming in for Matias Aguero.  Leonardo Ghiraldini and Martin Castrogiovanni will complete the front row.  Edoardo Gori is also back at scrumhalf after serving his suspension with Guglielmo Palazzani moving to the bench.

There are three further changes in the back line, where Giovambattista Venditti returns to the wings with Leonardo Sarto and Andrea Masi completing the back three for the Italians.  Luca Morisi  moves to outside centre to accommodate Gonzalo Garcia.  This will be the 23rd meeting between Italy and the Dragons with the Welsh dominating the series with 19 wins to just the two of the Azzurri.

Italy’s match day squad:

15 Andrea MASI (Wasps, 93 caps)
14 Leonardo SARTO (Zebre Rugby, 18 caps)
13 Luca MORISI (Benetton Treviso, 15 caps)
12 Gonzalo GARCIA (Zebre Rugby, 36 caps)
11 Giovambattista VENDITTI (Newcastle Falcons, 28 caps)
10 Tommaso ALLAN (USAP Perpignan, 16 caps)
9 Edoardo GORI (Benetton Treviso, 42 caps)*
8 Sergio PARISSE (Stade Francais, 112 caps) – captain
7 Francesco MINTO (Benetton Treviso, 18 caps)
6 Alessandro ZANNI (Benetton Treviso, 89 caps)
5 Joshua FURNO (Newcastle Falcons, 30 caps)
4 Quintin GELDENHUYS (Zebre Rugby, 56 caps)
3 Martin CASTROGIOVANNI (Racing ’92, 112 caps)
2 Leonardo GHIRALDINI (Leicester Tigers, 77 caps)
1 Michele RIZZO (Leicester Tigers, 18 caps)

Replacements:

16 Andrea MANICI (Zebre Rugby, 12 caps)
17 Matias AGUERO (svincolato, 35 caps)
18 Lorenzo CITTADINI (Wasps, 39 caps)
19 Valerio BERNABO’ (Zebre Rugby, 24 caps)
20 Samuela VUNISA (Saracens, 7 caps)
21 Guglielmo PALAZZANI (Zebre Rugby, 10 caps)
22 Carlo CANNA (Zebre Rugby, 2 caps)
23 Luke MCLEAN (Benetton Treviso, 70 caps)

Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images