Brunel keeps his options open

January 15, 2015 16:33:24 UK

Martin Castrogiovanni has been included in Italy’s training squad.

Italy coach Jacques Brunel has named four uncapped backs in his training squad ahead of the Six Nations which starts next month.

Treviso’s Simone Ragusi, Calvisano’s Marcello Violi and Zebre duo Michele Visentin and Giulio Bisegni have all been included in the squad which will meet up on 25th January.

Brunel has also recalled Mauro Bergamasco and Giovanbattista Venditti as he steps up his preparations for Italy’s opening Six Nations game against Ireland on 7th February.

Brunel, who has one eye on the World Cup later this year, said: “The tournament is the last real opportunity to test some young people who are proving to have interesting qualities in Guinness PRO12 or, as in the case of Violi, at the top of the Italian top division.

“For them it is an exciting opportunity to demonstrate their worth in the year of the World Cup. Mauro Bergamasco and Venditti, who recently returned from injury, are two athletes backed by a solid international experience that will be of great use to the group in the difficult weeks ahead of us.”

Italy’s training squad:

Forwards: Matias Aguero, Martin Castrogiovanni, Dario Chistolini, Alberto De Marchi, Leonardo Ghiraldini, Andrea Manici, George Biagi, Marco Bortolami, Joshua Furno, Quintin Geldenhuys, Robert Barbieri, Mauro Bergamasco, Simone Favaro, Francesco Minto, Sergio Parisse, Alessandro Zanni.

Backs: Edoardo Gori, Guglielmo Palazzani, Marcello Violi, Tommaso Allan, Kelly Haimona, Giulio Bisegni, Michele Campagnaro, Andrea Masi, Luke McLean, Luca Morisi, Simone Ragusi, Leonardo Sarto, Giovambattista Venditti, Michele Visentin.

Italy are 501.00 to win the Six Nations 2015 outright and can be backed at 34.00 to win Pool D at the World Cup 2015.

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