Quintin Geldenhuys to captain Italy in Sergio Parisse’s absence

Zebre lock Quintin Geldenhuys will captain Italy after Jacques Brunel named his 30-man squad for their summer tour

Long-serving Italy captain Sergio Parisse Photo: Pierre Selim, via Flickr

Zebre lock Quintin Geldenhuys will captain Italy after Jacques Brunel named his 30-man squad for their summer tour to the southern hemisphere.

The Azzurri head coach is without captain and talisman Sergio Parisse to injury and star prop Martin Castrogiovanni, who could feature in two finals with Toulon later this month, is rested.

The squad also includes Newcastle Falcons-bound lock Josh Furno, who impressed in this year’s Six Nations, as well as Ospreys scrum-half Tito Tebaldi—who returned to the international fold in the Six Nations after a two year absence—and London Wasps full-back Andrea Masi.

Brunel has continued from his Six Nations ideology by blending experience in the pack with young talent in the backline, including Benetton Treviso duo Michele Campagnaro and Angelo Esposito, while former Scotland age-grade outside-half Tommaso Allan is again included.

Zebre’s Mauro Bergamasco could become the latest Italian to reach 100 caps if he plays in all three matches of the tour—second in the summer squad only to Marco Bortolami.

Brunel has also named three uncapped players in the squad in Dario Chistolini, Andrea de Marchi and Guglielmo Palazzani. The Zebre trio were part of Brunel’s wider Six Nations squad, but failed to feature.

Italy will play Fiji in Suva on Saturday 7 June, Samoa in Apia a week later and 2019 Rugby World Cup hosts Japan in Tokyo on 21 June.

Italy squad for the Pacific Islands and Japan

Forwards: Matias Agüero (Zebre), Dario Chistolini (Zebre), Lorenzo Cittadini (Benetton Treviso), Alberto de Marchi (Treviso), Andrea de Marchi (Zebre), Leonardo Ghiraldini (Treviso), Davide Giazzon (Zebre), Andrea Manici (Zebre), George Biagi (Zebre), Marco Bortolami (Zebre), Marco Fuser (Treviso), Quintin Geldenhuys (Zebre), Robert Barbieri (Treviso), Mauro Bergamasco (Zebre), Paul Derbyshire (Treviso), Josh Furno (Biarritz), Manoa Vosawai (Treviso).

Backs: Guglielmo Palazzani (Zebre), Tito Tebaldi (Ospreys), Tommaso Allan (Peripgnan), Luciano Orquera (Zebre), Michele Campagnaro (Treviso), Angelo Esposito (Treviso), Gonzalo Garcia (Zebre), Tommaso Iannone (Zebre), Andrea Masi (London Wasps), Luke McLean (Treviso), Leonardo Sarto (Zebre), Alberto Sgarbi (Treviso), Giovanbattista Venditti (Zebre).

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