Italy "A" Head Coach Gianluca Guidi today named his 28-man Churchill Cup squad.
The Azzurri will make their debut in the competition on Saturday June 4, facing Canada at Franklin’s Gardens. The team come off the back of a 24-0 win over the XV della Serenissima (Italian North East invitational club) yesterday night in San Donà, close to Venice.
Two Italy "A" tries came from seventeen-year-old winger Angelo Esposito, who made his debut at senior level and stunned the crowd with his quality performance deserving of his Churchill Cup selection. He is joined by Italy U18 team-mate Edoardo Padovani, who replaced Tito Tebaldi at scrumhalf yesterday in San Donà.
Rovigo winger Andrea Bacchetti, who has two caps following his appearances in the 2009 RBS 6 Nations, has also been added to the squad after his superb performance in the Italian Championship Final on Saturday, despite his team losing 18-14 to Petrarca Padova after leading 14-3 in the first half.
"Andrea played an amazing final and he deserved the call” Guidi said.
“But both me and De Carli are pleased by the way the youngests performed in yesterday's game against the Venetop region selection. It is crucial for their growth to compete in a top level tournament like the Churchill Cup."
Italy "A" Churchill Cup squad
Matias AGUERO (MPS Aironi, 17 caps)
Dario CHISTOLINI (Petrarca Padova)
Alberto DE MARCHI (MPS Aironi)
Fabio STAIBANO (MPS Aironi, 9 caps)
Tommaso D’APICE (Futura Park Rugby Roma)*
Andrea MANICI (HBS GranDucato Parma)*
Valerio BERNABO’ (Benetton Treviso, 19 caps) - capitano
Marco BORTOLAMI (MPS Aironi, 84 caps)
Joshua FURNO (MPS Aironi)*
Cornelius VAN ZYL (Benetton Treviso)
Nicola BELARDO (Estra I Cavalieri Prato)*
Mauro BERGAMASCO (Stade Francais, 84 caps)
Francesco MINTO (Benetton Treviso)
Manoa VOSAWAI (Benetton Treviso, 8 caps)
Edoardo PADOVANI (Marchiol Mogliano)**
Tito TEBALDI (MPS Aironi, 14 caps)
Riccardo BOCCHINO (MPS Aironi, 6 caps)*
DuRandt GERBER (HBS GranDucato Parma)
Andrea BACCHETTI (Femi-CZ Rovigo, 2 caps)
Angelo ESPOSITO (Ruggers Tarvisium)**
Denis MAJSTOROVIC (Estra I Cavalieri Prato)
Gilberto PAVAN (MPS Aironi, esordiente)
Andrea PRATICHETTI (Benetton Treviso)*
Matteo PRATICHETTI (MPS Aironi, 22 caps)
Michele SEPE (Benetton Treviso, 3 caps)
Giulio TONIOLATTI (MPS Aironi, 5 caps)
Ruggero TREVISAN (BancaMonteParma Crociati)*
Giovanbattista VENDITTI (MPS Aironi)*