Italy Faces Spain As Teams Prepare for Knockouts at #WRWC2017

August 16, 2017

Italy Faces Spain As Teams Prepare for Knockouts at #WRWC2017


Photo: INPHO/Tommy Dickson (Italy’s Michela Sillari tries to break through the England defence)

Doug Coil

In Pool B, Italy and Spain look for their first win at the UCD Bowl at 14:45 local (9:45am ET) in Dublin. Both teams will also be trying for bonus points as knockout seeds are at stake.

In the opening matches for both sides, Italy lost 24-12 to the USA, while Spain lost 56-5 to England. In the second round, Italy lost 56-13 to England, while Spain lost 43-0 to the USA.

Point differential will likely impact determining the knockout seeds, so Italy after two rounds is a minus 47 and Spain at minus 94.

The match may be viewed worldwide outside of the Italy and Spain on

Italy has made three changes for the match against Spain as Silvia Gaudino will be at open side flanker. Isabella Locatelli moves to blindside flanker from No. 8 and Elisa Giordano is at No. 8. In the backs, Paola Zangirolami will start at inside center. Two positional changes have also been made in the backs, with Beatrice Rigoni switching from center to flyhalf, as Veronica Schiavon moves to the reserves. Michela Sillari also switched wing positions.

Spain has also made three changes, although Iera Echebarria is a positional change from fullback to wing, as Barbara Pla returns to her fullback position after a mandatory 7 day absence after a head assessment from the opening match. Barbara García will start at inside center.

Look for Italy’s fullback Manuela Furlan in the attack. She is a dangerous runner and could also open space for other attackers. Look for the forwards to contest the breakdowns, something that was difficult against England.

Spain did not have a chance to take advantage of their ball handling skills against the USA. The team has 11 of the 12 Olympians on the squad and veteran one. Spain will need to improve on their lineout throws to provide them with an attacking platform.

Italy v Spain: 1 Marta Ferrari  2 Melissa Bettoni 3 Lucia Gai 4 Valeria Fedrighi 5 Alice Trevisan 6 Isabella Locatelli 7 Silvia Gaudino 8 Elisa Giordano 9 Sara Barattin (C) 10 Beatrice Rigoni 11 Michela Sillari 12 Paola Zangirolami 13 Maria Grazia Cioffi 14 Sofia Stefan 15 Manuela Furlan 16 Elia Cucchiella 17 Michela Este 18 Sara Tounesi 19 Valentina Ruzza 20 Ilaria Arrighetti 21 Veronica Schiavon 22 Veronica Bonaldo 23 Veronica Madia

Spain v USA: 1 Isabel Rico (VC) 2 Aroa González (C) 3 Jeanina Vinueza 4 Maria Ribera 5 Rocio García 6 Diana Gasso 7 Paula Medin 8 Angela Del Pan 9 Anne Fernández de Corres 10 Patricia García 11 Iera Echebarria 12 Marina Bravo 13 Vanesa Rial 14 Barbara García 15 Barbara Pla 16 Saioa Jaurena 17 Isabel Macias 18 Laura Delgado 19 Monica Castelo 20 Berta García 21 Carlotta Meliz 22 Amaia Erbina 23 Uri Barrutieta

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North American Rugby News With A USA Slant