14 Oct 2012

Veteran Italian prop recalled to face All Blacks

2:20 pm on 14 October 2012

Italy's rugby coach Jacques Brunel has recalled the prop Andrea Lo Cicero, ending any notion the most capped Italian player (95 appearances) is ready to retire, as he has attempted to do several times in the past.

Brunel has also included two new faces in his 30-man squad for the upcoming international rugby tests against Australia, Tonga and New Zealand.

Treviso centre Tommaso Iannone, 22, has been called into the squad for the first time while his club teammate Francesco Minto returns after an aborted attempt at his debut.

Minto, a 25-year-old flanker, had been part of Italy's squad for their tour of South America this year, but was prevented from playing because of a muscle injury.

Brunel has also called up South Africa-born fly-half Tobias Botes despite his underwhelming performances with the boot during Italy's last Six Nations campaign.

Italy will prepare for the tests with a training camp in Rome from October 21-24 before returning on 28-31 October.

The Azzurri face Tonga in Brescia on November 10, the world champion All Blacks at Rome's Olympic stadium a week later and the Wallabies in Florence on November 24.

Italy squad:

Backs (13): Edoardo Gori (Treviso), Kristopher Burton (Treviso), Tommaso Benvenuti (Treviso), Luke McLean (Treviso), Luca Morisi (Treviso), Alberto Sgarbi (Treviso), Giovanbattista Venditti (Zebra), Luciano Orquera (Zebra), Mirco Bergamasco (Racing-Metro/FRA), Tobias Botes (Treviso), Gonzalo Canale (La Rochelle/FRA), Tommaso Iannone (Treviso), Andrea Masi (Wasps/ENG)

Forwards (17): Michele Rizzo (Treviso), Martin Castrogiovanni (Leicester Tigers/ENG), Lorenzo Cittadini (Treviso), Andrea Lo Cicero (Racing-Metro/FRA), Leonardo Ghiraldini (Treviso), Joshua Furno (Zebra), Roberto Barbieri (Treviso), Francesco Minto (Treviso), Quintin Geldenhuys (Zebra), Simone Favaro (Treviso), Alessandro Zanni (Treviso), Alberto De Marchi (Zebra), Davide Giazzon (Rovigo), Antonio Pavanello (Treviso), Mauro Bergamasco (Zebra), Sergio Parisse (Stade Francais/FRA), Paul Derbyshire (Treviso)