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Pavanello itching to return to international stage

Guinness PRO12 Editor

8 Feb 2012

Treviso back row Antonio Pavanello takes on Scarlets prop Rhys Thomas at the breakdown

Benetton Treviso captain Antonio Pavanello has revealed that he can’t wait to break his Six Nations duck after he was rewarded for his RaboDirect PRO12 form with a place on the Italy bench.

The second row has been one of the standout players for Treviso in their push for a RaboDirect PRO12 play-off place.

And he admits a change of management for the Azzurri – Jacques Brunel has replaced Nick Mallett in charge – has been decisive in him being back in favour on the international scene.

“Last year I felt I deserved a chance. But I was told that I wasn’t tall enough and others were preferred. I thought I deserved a spot, it’s a shame, the call-up never came,” said Pavanello, who has won five caps for Italy, and will be on the bench for Saturday’s clash with England in Rome.

“Last year I got injured just before the tournament. First of all I need to try to avoid misfortune, and if I get on I’ll be desperate to show what I’m worth, I’m really keen to do that.

“The other times that I was called up it was because someone else was injured, and that always leaves you with a few regrets. This time I was called up from the start and that’s very gratifying. With Treviso I have been playing at a high level so I feel like I’ve earned my spot.

“It’s clear that we are in a period of examination at the moment, for the coach as well, so it’s possible we’ll see some changes during the tournament.”