Italy have named an inexperienced side for their Six Nations clash with France, opting for South African Johan Meyer to wear the No 7 shirt.
It will be Meyer’s 10th appearance for the Azzurri as he partners Sebastian Negri and Michele Lamaro in the back row. Italy are without star eighthman Jake Polledri and regular blindsider Braam Steyn, both of whom are nursing injuries.
In the front row, Luca Bigi captains the side while the impressive 20-year-old Paolo Garbisi continues at 10 ahead of Tommaso Allan. There is a debut in the midfield for former Argentina sevens player Ignacio Brex.
Italy face France at the Stadio Olympico in Rome at 4:15pm (SA time).
Italy – 15 Jacopo Trulla, 14 Luca Sperandio, 13 Marco Zanon, 12 Ignacio Brex, 11 Monty Ioane, 10 Paolo Garbisi, 9 Stephen Varney, 8 Michele Lamaro, 7 Johan Meyer, 6 Sebastian Negri, 5 David Sisi, 4 Marco Lazzaroni, 3 Marco Riccioni, 2 Luca Bigi (c), 1 Cherif Traore
Subs: 16 Gianmarco Lucchesi, 17 Danilo Fischetti, 18 Giosue Zilocchi, 19 Niccolo Cannone, 20 Frederico Ruzza, 21 Maxime Mbanda, 22 Guglielmo Palazzani, 23 Carlo Canna.