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Louis Lynagh called into Italy squad days after confirming Quins exit

By Josh Raisey
Louis Lynagh of Harlequins with the ball and team-mate Will Joseph in support during the Premiership Rugby Cup match between Harlequins and Saracens at Twickenham Stoop on October 01, 2023 in London, England. (Photo by Patrick Khachfe/Getty Images)

Harlequins’ departing winger Louis Lynagh has been called into Gonzalo Quesada’s Italy squad this week as they prepare to face France in Lille in round three of the Guinness Six Nations.

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The 23-year-old’s move from the Gallagher Premiership to Benetton at the end of the season was confirmed this week, having originally been broken by RugbyPass, with the winger holding an ambition to play for the Azzurri.

Those plans have already come to fruition faster than many would have expected, with a call-up to the national team announced ahead of a fallow week.

The son of Australia legend Michael Lynagh, Louis was born in Italy and has an Italian mother. He also qualifies for England, having represented them at age-grade level, and was even called into the England squad under Eddie Jones.

Lynagh has followed in the footsteps of his future Benetton, and possibly Italy, teammate Paolo Odogwu, who also opted to pursue an international career with Italy having previously featured in England camps. Odogwu made his Italy debut last year before making their World Cup squad, but missed out on the Six Nations with an Achilles injury.

Fixture
Six Nations
France
13 - 13
Full-time
Italy
All Stats and Data

After his departure from Harlequins was announced this week, Lynagh said: “It’s been a difficult decision to leave my boyhood club, but I feel the time is right for a new challenge in Italy.

“I have loved my time at Quins and made lifelong friends, working with some of the best players, coaches, and staff, and achieving the ultimate Premiership success in 2021.

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“I would like to thank all the Quins fans who have supported me over my career, it’s been amazing to play in front of a packed Stoop every week, and I can’t wait for a massive finish to our season.”

Harlequins director of rugby Billy Millard added: “Louis has been a pleasure to work with and we have been proud to see him develop from our Academy to the first-team squad. He has certainly had some great moments in his short career to date and is a popular figure across the Club.

“His 2020/21 season in particular showcased his ability and try-scoring strength. We’re excited to watch his career develop further at Benetton and potentially for Italy. We wish him the very best as he seeks to build his career in Italy.”

Italy Squad
Forwards: Simone Ferrari (Benetton Rugby), Danilo Fishetti (Zebre Parma), Matteo Nocera (Zebre Parma), Luca Rizzoli (Zebre Parma), Mirco Spanish (Benetton Rugby), Giosuè Zilocchi (Benetton Rugby), Gianmarco Lucchesi (Benetton Rugby), Marco Manfredi (Zebre Parma), Giacomo Nicotera (Benetton Rugby), Matteo Canali (Zebre Parma), Niccolò Cannone (Benetton Rugby), Federico Ruzza (Benetton Rugby), Andrea Zambonin (Zebre Parma), Riccardo Favretto (Benetton Rugby), Alessandro Izekor (Benetton Rugby), Michele Lamaro (Benetton Rugby), Ross Vintcent (Exeter Chiefs), Manuel Zuliani (Benetton Rugby)

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Backs: Alessandro GARBISI (Benetton Rugby, 8 caps), Martin PAGE-RELO (Lyon, 5 caps), Stephen VARNEY (Gloucester, 26 caps), Paolo GARBISI (Montpellier, 33 caps), Leonardo MARIN (Benetton Rugby, 6 caps), Juan Ignacio BREX (Benetton Rugby, 32 caps), Tommaso MENONCELLO (Benetton Rugby, 14 caps), Federico MORI (Bayonne, 15 caps), Marco ZANON (Benetton Rugby, 16 caps), Ange CAPUOZZO (Stade Toulousain, 17 caps), Monty IOANE (Lyon 27 caps), Simone GESI (Zebre Parma, 1 cap), Louis LYNAGH (Harlequins, debutant), Francois MEY (Clermont, debutant), Lorenzo PANI (Zebre Parma, 7 caps)

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