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Vunisa On For Azzurri

Samuela Vunisa will start at No 8 for Italy against France tomorrow at 7am (Fijian time). Vunisa replaces Sergio Parisse and is remarkably laid back for someone who has to
19 Sep 2015 12:23
Vunisa On For Azzurri
Samuela Vunisa will start at Number 8 for Italy against France tomorrow.

Samuela Vunisa will start at No 8 for Italy against France tomorrow at 7am (Fijian time).

Vunisa replaces Sergio Parisse and is remarkably laid back for someone who has to replace a national hero.

Parisse is yet to recover after having a haematoma drained from his calf muscle and Italy coach Jacques Brunel gave the 27-year-old Vunisa the nod, with hooker Leonardo Ghiraldini chosen to lead the team out as captain.

“Replacing a hero in the team is a really humbling moment.

“Sergio has really helped me. When I first arrived he’s always been there in my first few games.

“I went and worked with him and talked with him and the only thing he says is that we are two different players. I am big and scary, he is more of a leader and his presence is always felt,” Vunisa said.

The contrast between the pair’s international experience is apparent; Vunisa is playing in his first Rugby World Cup match and will win his ninth test cap against France. Parisse has won 113 Italy caps, 60 of them as captain and England 2015 will be his fourth World Cup.

Nonetheless, Vunisa is well aware that he will need to be his own man tomorrow, though he will have the experienced head of Parisse’s long-time lieutenant in the back row, flanker Alessandro Zanni, alongside him.

“We are two different players offering something different.

“As an islander I am known as a ball-carrier. It is always good to have go-forward so the backs can do their show and have their dance. For me to contribute to the team, I put my hands up and do it for the team,” Vunisa added.

Italy: 15 Luke McLean, 14 Leonardo Sarto, 13 Michele Campagnaro, 12 Andrea Masi, 11 Giovanbattista Venditti, 10 Tommaso Allan, 9 Edoardo Gori, 8 Samuela Vunisa, 7 Francesco Minto, 6 Alessandro Zanni, 5 Joshua Furno, 4 Quintin Geldenhuys, 3 Martin Castrogiovanni, 2 Leonardo Ghiraldini (c), 1 Matias Aguero.

Replacements: 16 Andrea Manici, 17 Michele Rizzo, 18 Lorenzo Cittadini, 19 Valerio Bernabò, 20 Simone Favaro, 21 Guglielmo Palazzani, 22 Carlo Canna, 23 Enrico Bacchin

 

Feedback:  anasilini.ratuva@fijisun.com.fj

 



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