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Aironi team to face the Ospreys

Guinness PRO12 Editor

16 Feb 2012

Aironi return to play their first official match one month after ending their European Cup campaign in Leicester, after having their clash against Munster called off last week due to adverse weather conditions in Viadana.

Friday evening (kick-off at 7:30) at the Liberty Stadium in Swansea, the Italian side face the Ospreys in RaboDirect PRO12 round 15 looking to collect their first away points in this season.

The Welsh side is second in the table at the moment and will see the debut of Steve Tandy as Head Coach.

On the Aironi side, Rowland Phillips is forced to choose a brand new team because of injuries (Trevisan, Williams, Buso, Ongaro, Orquera, Sole and Robertson are out) and because of Italy’s request to rest the Internationals. Only Giulio Toniolatti, Simone Favaro and Mauro Bergamasco amongst the ten Aironi players called by Italy are cleared to play Friday.

Alberto Benettin will play at fullback, with Giulio Toniolatti and Sinoti Sinoti on the wings to complete the back three. Gilberto Pavan and Gabriel Pizarro form the couple in the centres. In the halves Rowland Phillips chooses Naas Olivier at fly-half and Tito Tebaldi at scrum half.

One of the most interesting bits of team news is that Simone Favaro plays at number 8, with the back row completed by Mauro Bergamasco and Nicola Cattina. Joshua Furno returns from injury and retakes his place in the locks alongside Carlo Del Fava. Hooker Roberto Santamaria will skipper the team, while Lorenzo Romano and Matias Aguero are the props.

In the replacements, there is a first call for Antonio Denti, a 21-year-old hooker born and raised in Viadana. Props Alberto De Marchi and Salvatore Perugini, lock George Biagi, back rower Filippo Ferrarini and backs Tyson Keats, Riccardo Pavan and Matteo Pratichetti complete the bench.

15 Alberto Benettin; 14 Giulio Toniolatti, 13 Gilberto Pavan, 12 Gabriel Pizarro, 11 Sinoti Sinoti; 10 Naas Olivier, 9 Tito Tebaldi; 8 Simone Favaro, 7 Mauro Bergamasco, 6 Nicola Cattina; 5 Carlo Del Fava, 4 Joshua Furno; 3 Lorenzo Romano, 2 Roberto Santamaria (cap), 1 Matias Aguero.

16 Antonio Denti, 17 Alberto De Marchi, 18 Salvatore Perugini, 19 George Biagi, 20 Filippo Ferrarini, 21 Tyson Keats, 22 Riccardo Pavan, 23 Matteo Pratichetti.

Coach: Rowland Phillips.