Bortolami returns to Italy starting line-up
March 5, 2008
Marco Bortolami returns to Italy's second row for the RBS 6 Nations Championship match against France in Paris on Sunday.
The Gloucester lock is one of four changes to the Italy side. Kaine Robertson replaces Albert Sgarbi on the wing after recovering from injury, while in the front row, Andrea Lo Cicero replaces Salvatore Perugini.
Alessandro Zanni comes in for Mauro Bergamasco, who were suspended for gouging. Coach Nick Mallett said that the Italian Federation is examining carefully the suspension handed out to Bergamasco for gouging during the match against Wales.
Mallett said that while Bergamasco's actions were inexcusable, he questioned the conduct of the Welsh players leading up to the incident and that it should also have been looked at.
"In the last minutes of that game there were things that happened to Mauro on the field which caused him to lose his head. He was either punched or elbowed in the back of the head two minutes from the end," Mallett told a news conference on Wednesday.
"When taking a chip he was tackled high and injured his shoulder in the last seconds. There's no excuse for the way he behaved but there is a reason."
Viadana's uncapped Jacobus Erasmus is likely to win his first cap from the bench.
Italy: Andrea Marcato, Kaine Robertson, Gonzalo Canale, Mirco Bergamasco, Ezio Galon, Andrea Masi, Simon Picone, Sergio Parisse (capt), Alessandro Zanni, Josh Sole, Marco Bortolami, Carlo Antonio Del Fava, Martin Castrogiovanni, Leonardo Ghiraldini, Andrea Lo Cicero.
Replacements: Fabio Ongaro, Carlos Nieto, Salvatore Perugini, Jacobus Erasmus, Pietro Travagli, Enrico Patrizio, Alberto Sgarbi.
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