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Castello returns to lead Zebre in Italian derby

Guinness PRO14 Rugby Editor

22 Dec 2017


After the EPCR Challenge Cup double header against Gloucester, Zebre are ready to dive back into the Guinness PRO14 tournament.

The typical double Christmas back-to-back game between the two Italian teams returns in the Christmas holiday calendar.

The first act will be held tomorrow in Treviso, with the return encounter scheduled for Saturday December 30th at 3pm in Parma.

This season there will be a third game between the two Italians sides that will close the regular season at the end of April in Treviso.

It will be the eleventh official challenge between the two teams, which sees the White & Green Lions ahead 7 to 3 over Zebre.

Tomorrow’s challenge, directed by Italian international referee Mitrea, is the second seasonal game between the two teams that have already met in the pre-season friendly that saw the XV of coach Bradley overcome coach Crowley in Treviso.

There will be many Italian internationals on the pitch tomorrow, just few weeks before the start of the next Six Nations: 10 will be wearing the Zebre jersey, all as starters.

Several of them return to the squad after missing the trip last Saturday. Zebre captain Castello, of the number 8 Giammarioli and of the Italian-English lock Sisi all return to the squad.

Here’s Zebre Rugby Club line-up for Saturday, December 23 match at Stadio Monigo in Treviso (Italy) for the 11st round of the Guinness PRO14 against the italian side of Benetton Treviso. Kick off at 3 pm local time:

15 Matteo Minozzi*
14 Mattia Bellini
13 Tommaso Boni*
12 Tommaso Castello (cap)
11 Giulio Bisegni
10 Carlo Canna,
9 Marcello Violi*

8 Renato Giammarioli*
7 Johan Meyer
6 Maxime Mbandà*
5 George Biagi
4 David Sisi
3 Dario Chistolini
2 Oliviero Fabiani
1 Andrea Lovotti*


16 Tommaso D’Apice*
17 Cruze Ah-Nau
18 Roberto Tenga
19 Jacopo Sarto
20 Derick Minnie
21 Guglielmo Palazzani
22 Serafin Bordoli
23 Ciaran Gaffney

Coach. Michael Bradley

Not available for selection due to injury: Gabriele Di Giulio*, Leonard Krumov*, Andrea Manici*, James Tucker, Giovanbattista Venditti*

*Former member of the Italian Rugby Union academy “Ivan Francescato” of Parma

Referee: Marius Mitrea (Federazione Italiana Rugby)
Assistant Referees: Manuel Bottino e Andrea Piardi(Federazione Italiana Rugby)
TMO: Alan Falzone (Federazione Italiana Rugby)

Live tv coverage in Italy on Eurosport 2. Live text coverage of the game on www.pro14rugby.org and on Zebre Rugby twitter account with the official game hashtag #BENvZEB