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Wins come before performances for Zebre

Guinness PRO12 Editor

6 Sep 2012

Zebre will run out at the Stadio XXV Aprile for the first time in the RaboDirect PRO12 against Connacht on Friday night but captain Gonzalo Garcia has told fans not to expect a fiesta of free-flowing rugby.

The Italians went down 37-6 to Newport-Gwent Dragons in their competition curtain raiser last Friday and technical director Christian Gajan has made four changes to the starting line-up.

Most notably Italy flanker Mauro Bergamasco comes in for the injured Nicola Cattina while young Alberto Benettin replaces Roberto Quartaroli to accompany Garcia in the centres.

But with the squad still very much in its infancy, Garcia, who has played at the Stadio XXV Aprile before for Calvisano and Treviso, is prioritising winning matches over entertainment.

“The first thing we want to do is win the match,” said Garcia, who has 25 caps for Italy.

“And if we win playing in a way that doesn’t please the fans then I am sorry but I’m sure they’ll be happy for the win, as will everybody else.

“We have prepared very well for the game this weekend, always keeping it in our minds. We want to play a multi-phase game, moving the ball but also be tactically intelligent.

“We have prepared well and I hope we will manage to play as we have practised.”