Franco Smith has made one change to his Italy XV for Saturday’s Six Nations finale against England in Rome. The Italians were beaten 50-17 by Ireland last Saturday when they returned to championship action in Dublin.

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Despite that heavy Six Nations loss, coach Smith has opted to kept changes to a minimum in the hope of building some Italy selection consistency. That means the only alteration to their starting side sees Matteo Minozzi take over for Jayden Hayward at full-back.

Minozzi missed last Saturday’s round four championship match due to his start for Wasps in their Gallagher Premiership final defeat to Exeter at Twickenham.

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There is also just one alteration on the bench, Guglielmo Palazzani coming in as back-up scrum-half in place of Gloucester’s Callum Braley

“In Ireland, we saw flashes of our game and something positive, but we are aware that we have a lot of work ahead of us,” said Smith. “We are a young team that wants to emerge. We continue on our way to build a precise identity.”

ITALY (vs England, Saturday)
15 Matteo MINOZZI (Wasps, 19 caps)*
14 Edoardo PADOVANI (Benetton Rugby, 24 caps)*
13 Luca MORISI (Benetton Rugby, 33 caps)*
12 Carlo CANNA (Zebre Rugby Club, 27 caps)
11 Mattia BELLINI (Zebre Rugby Club, 26 caps)
10 Paolo GARBISI (Benetton Rugby, 1 cap)*
9 Marcello VIOLI (Zebre Rugby Club, 16 caps)*
8 Jake POLLEDRI (Gloucester Rugby, 17 caps)
7 Braam STEYN (Benetton Rugby, 40 caps)
6 Sebastian NEGRI (Benetton Rugby, 26 caps)
5 Niccolò CANNONE (Benetton Rugby, 4 caps)*
4 Marco LAZZARONI (Benetton Rugby, 7 caps)*
3 Giosuè ZILOCCHI (Zebre Rugby Club, 6 caps)*
2 Luca BIGI (Zebre Rugby Club, 28 caps) – capitano
1 Danilo FISCHETTI (Zebre Rugby Club, 4 caps)*

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Replacements:
16 Gianmarco LUCCHESI (Benetton Rugby, 1 cap)*
17 Simone FERRARI (Benetton Rugby, 30 caps)*
18 Pietro CECCARELLI (Brive, 10 caps)*
19 David SISI (Zebre Rugby Club, 10 caps)
20 Johan MEYER (Zebre Rugby Club 5 caps)
21 Maxime MBANDA’ (Zebre Rugby Club, 21 caps)*
22 Guglielmo PALAZZANI (Zebre Rugby Club, 39 caps)
23 Federico MORI (Kawasaki Robot Calvisano, 1 cap)

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