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Five additional call-ups for Italy ahead of Autumn Nations Series opener

Five additional call-ups for Italy ahead of Autumn Nations Series opener

edoardo padovani italy

Italy have called up five additional players ahead of their first Autumn Nations Series contest next weekend.

The Azzurri face New Zealand in Rome on Saturday and head coach Kieran Crowley has bolstered his ranks with the uncapped trio of hooker Hame Faiva, fly-half Leonardo Marin and back-rower Giovanni Pettinelli, as well as prop Cherif Traorè and versatile veteran back Edoardo Padovani.

All five play their domestic rugby for Benetton and in a corresponding move, Mattia Bellini, Andrea Lovotti, Luca Sperandio and Federico Zani have been released back to their clubs.

READ: Lamaro believes defence the key for Italy against All Blacks

Faiva, Marin, Pettinelli and Traorè played for Italy A in their 13-11 triumph over Spain on Saturday, with Marin in particular impressing in the No.10 shirt as he scored all 13 points.

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Italy will continue their training camp in Verona this week, ahead of the Autumn Nations Series clash with the All Blacks, before they play Argentina on November 13 and Uruguay seven days later – with Crowley convinced the team are in a good place.

“The work done this week in Verona has been of quality,” said the coach. “These were intense days in which we focused on our goals and the gameplan for the next matches. I can’t wait to be able to lead Italy on the pitch.

“I want to thank the players called up for the first part of camp – who are currently not present – for the approach they showed during this week.”

Italy squad for Autumn Nations Series:

Props: Pietro CECCARELLI (Brive, 14 caps), Danilo FISCHETTI (Zebre Rugby Club, 12 caps), Ivan NEMER (Benetton Ruby, uncapped), Matteo NOCERA (Fiamme Oro Rugby, uncapped), Marco RICCIONI (Saracens, 15 caps), Cherif TRAORE (Benetton Rugby, 11 caps)
Hookers: Luca BIGI (Zebre Rugby Club 37 caps), Epalahame FAIVA (Benetton Rugby, uncapped), Gianmarco LUCCHESI (Benetton Rugby, 6 caps)
Locks: Niccolò CANNONE (Benetton Rugby, 13 caps), Marco FUSER (Newcastle Falcons, 33 caps), Federico RUZZA (Benetton Rugby, 22 caps), David SISI (Zebre Rugby Club, 15 caps)
Back-rowers: Renato GIAMMARIOLI (Zebre Rugby Club, 4 caps), Michele LAMARO (Benetton Rugby, 7 caps) – captain, Giovanni LICATA (Zebre Rugby Club, 11 caps), Sebastian NEGRI (Benetton Rugby, 33 caps), Giovanni PETTINELLI (Benetton Rugby, uncapped), Abraham STEYN (Benetton Rugby, 44 caps)
Scrum-halves: Callum BRALEY (Benetton Rugby, 10 caps), Alessandro FUSCO (Fiamme Oro Rugby, uncapped), Stephen VARNEY (Gloucester Rugby 7 caps)
Fly-halves: Carlo CANNA (Zebre Rugby Club, 52 caps), Paolo GARBISI (Montpellier, 10 caps), Leonardo MARIN (Benetton Rugby, uncapped)
Centre: Juan Ignacio BREX (Benetton Rugby, 5 caps), Tommaso BONI (Zebre Rugby Club, 11 caps), Luca MORISI (Benetton Rugby, 34 caps), Marco ZANON (Benetton Rugby, 6 caps)
Wingers/Full-backs: Pierre BRUNO (Zebre Rugby Club, uncapped), Montanna IOANE (Benetton Rugby, 6 caps), Matteo MINOZZI (Wasps Rugby, 22 caps), Federico MORI (Bordeaux, 9 caps), Edoardo PADOVANI (Benetton Rugby, 28 caps)

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