14 Nov 2009

Italy coach gives warning ahead of All Blacks game

1:42 pm on 14 November 2009

Italy's rugby coach Nick Mallett has warned the hordes of home fans not to have unrealistic expectations for tonight's test against New Zealand in Milan.

The All Blacks coach, Graham Henry, is resting most of his top players for the 80,000 sellout at San Siro but Mallett still doubts his side can cause an upset.

The former South Africa coach says it is important Italian rugby and the players keep their feet on the ground and stay fairly humble, coming off 12 straight losses.

However, Mallett is looking forward to the country's biggest ever rugby crowd, and says his side wants to put on a great performance for rugby and for Italy.

Wellington fullback Corey Jane is one of three players retained from the Wales test win lineup for tonight's game, and he'll have his first All Blacks start at his specialist position of fullback.

Three players get their first test caps - wing Ben Smith, centre Tamati Ellison, and first five Mike Delany.

Rodney So'oialo will captain the All Blacks for the fifth time.