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Casualties as Conor O'Shea confirms 31-man Italy Rugby World Cup squad

By Ian Cameron
Ian McKinley in Six Nations action for Italy. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

Conor O’Shea has named his 31-man Italy Rugby World Cup squad for Japan – and there are some significant casualties.


Yesterday Italy walloped future Rugby World Cup Pool rivals Russia 85 – 15, which places second behind a 104-8 hammering of the Czech Republic in 1994 as the Azzurri’s biggest ever victory.

Former Leinster star Ian McKinley didn’t make the cut in a team that includes two fly-halves – Carlo Canna and Tomasso Allan.

There’s no room for backrows Jimmy Tuivaiti, Giovanni Licata, nor is there space for centre Marco Zanon or wing Angelo Esposito – among others.

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Sergio Parisse is set to equal the record for the most Rugby World Cups appearances after he was selected for what will be his fifth tournament.

Italy squad for Rugby World Cup


Simone Ferrari (Benetton Rugby)

Andrea Lovotti (Zebre Rugby Club)

Tiziano Pasquali (Benetton Rugby)

Nicola Quaglio (Benetton Rugby)

Marco Riccioni (Benetton Rugby)

Federico Zani (Benetton Rugby)


Luca Bigi (Zebre Rugby Club)

Oliviero Fabiani (Zebre Rugby Club)

Leonardo Ghiraldini (Unattached)



Dean Budd (Benetton Rugby)

Federico Ruzza (Benetton Rugby)

David Sisi (Zebre Rugby Club)

Alessandro Zanni (Benetton Rugby)


Maxime Mbanda ‘(Zebre Rugby Club)

Sebastian Negri (Benetton Rugby)

Sergio Parisse (Toulon) – captain

Jake Polledri (Gloucester)

Abraham Steyn (Benetton Rugby)


Callum Braley (Gloucester)

Guglielmo Palazzini (Zebre Rugby Club)

Tito Tebaldi (Benetton Rugby)


Tommaso Allan (Benetton Rugby)

Carlo Canna (Zebre Rugby Club)


Tommaso Benvenuti (Benetton Rugby)

Michele Campagnaro (Harlequins)

Luca Morisi (Benetton Rugby)

Back three

Mattia Bellini (Zebre Rugby Club)

Giulio Bisegni (Zebre Rugby Club)

Jayden Hayward (Benetton Rugby)

Matteo Minozzi (Wasps)

Edoardo Padovani (Zebre Rugby Club)


England Head Coach Eddie Jones said Wales was a brilliant World Cup warm-up after his side lost at the Principality Stadium. England suffered a 21-13 loss to Wales as both teams’ prepare for the Rugby World Cup that starts next month in Japan.

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