Rugby, Women’s Six Nations: Ireland-Italy tomorrow

Tomorrow in Cork the Azzurre, back from 0-74 with England, are looking for their first success in the tournament. Coach Di Giandomenico: ‘We need to have our balls and secure progress to develop our game’

The real Six Nations of Itadonne begin. Tomorrow at 6 p.m. in Cork, the blues will face Ireland on the third day of the tournament. Both teams are at zero points and must cancel the false start. Italy are also zero scored, against the Irish 4, but the caliber of rivals faced so far was different. So, even if the direct clashes speak against ours (2 wins and 18 losses, 1-14 at the Six Nations), never like this time the chance to achieve the first success on the “green” island for the girls of the coach Andrea di Giandomenico appears concrete. It would be a callback to the men’s business, winning for the first time in Wales.

186 selections

To do this, the coach injects 186 selections of experience into the team. They are the ones who will come to use the pair of players with the most appearances for the first time: scrum half Sara Barattin (103) and extreme captain Manuela Furlan (83). Against France and England, uneventful matches, they were partly spared. From now on, their push will be the additional weapon with the solidity of the faithful who have played all 160 ‘so far (Giordana Duca, Elisa Giordano, Maria Magatti) and the others on the two hours of actual play (Lucia Gai, Isabella Locatelli, Gaia Maris, Aura Muzzo, Michela Sillari, Beatrice Rigoni, Sara Tuonesi and Sofia Stefan). These 13 girls are the backbone of the formation.

rivals in crisis

Italy’s only success against the Irish in the tournament dates back to 29-27 in 2019 at Lanfranchi in Parma. Last year, two defeats: 25-5 at the Six Nations and 15-7 at the world qualifying tournament. In this last competition, the Irish crisis exploded, latent for a time given the contrasts between players and federation. The elimination of the World Cup in September in New Zealand, by the Italians and Scotland, is the striking consequence. Sequence with the two knockouts of the tournament, predictable with France (but not so heavy, 40-5), surprising at home with Wales (27-19). This is why Italdonne has an important opportunity to dispel the Irish taboo. Even if it comes from the heaviest knockout of all time with England, 74-0.

coach’s comment

“We urgently need to start delivering a proper performance at the required level again – says Di Giandomenico -. We analyzed the last game, tried to recover our energy and worked to make it happen tomorrow. Ireland are also looking for the first success “In the tournament, it will be a tight match. We need to have our balls and ensure progress to develop our game. Obviously, we will have to work effectively in defense.” The second row Sara Tuonesi, champion of France with Romagnat and of Italy with Colorno adds: “Our strength is the group and its determination. We are like a family. Even if it may sound rhetorical, it is the truth”. This force has come time to bring it out. Now, defeats like those against France and England are no longer acceptable.


15 Manuela Furlan (m, 83 caps); 14 Aura Muzzo (21), 13 Michela Sillari (65), 12 Béatrice Rigoni (51), 11 Maria Magatti (40); 10 Véronique Madia (27 years old), 9 Sara Barattin (103 years old); 8 Elisa Giordano (51), 7 Isabella Locatelli (30), 6 Beatrice Veronese (8); 5 Giordana Duca (2), 4 Sara Tounesi (20); 3 Lucia Gai (78), 2 Melissa Bettoni (66), Gaia Maris (8) Available: 16 Vittoria Vecchini (5), 17 Michela Merlo (11), 18 Sara Seye (4), 19 Valeria Fedrighi (30), 20 Alessandra Frangipani (1), Sofia Stefan (64), Alyssa D’Inca (6), Vittoria Ostuni Minuzzi (11).


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