South African-born No8 Ross Vintcent makes Italy Six Nations squad

Exeter Chiefs No8 Ross Vintcent has been named in Italy’s Guinness Six Nations squad by new coach Gonzalo Quesada alongside four other uncapped players.

The 21-year-old Chiefs loose forward was born in Johannesburg but came through the Italian Rugby Federation Academy before joining Exeter in 2022. Before his move to the Gallagher Premiership, he had represented Zebre.

The dynamic back row is one of five uncapped players in the pack for the Azzurri alongside props Matteo Nocera, Luca Rizzoli and Mirco Spagnolo, and fellow back row Alessandro Izekor.

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Italy get their Six Nations tournament underway against England on February 3 in Rome.

Ahead of his first Six Nations in charge of Italy, Quesada said (translated on Google): “We will have the opportunity to work for the first time, even for just 3 days, with the entire group. In the first part of January the focus was on the new working methodology, on field trips and meeting points. Now we will go into the basics of our game and the attack and defense structures. We won’t have much time available and we will try to concentrate the work as much as possible. The staff worked very well and during this period there was constant discussion to best transfer all the information to the athletes” declared Gonzalo Quesada.

Italy 34-player squad
Pietro CECCARELLI (Perpignan, 31 caps
Danilo FISCHETTI (Zebre Parma, 36 caps)
Matteo NOCERA (Zebre Parma, uncapped)
Luca RIZZOLI (Zebre Parma, uncapped)
Mirco SPAGNOLO (Benetton Rugby, uncapped)
Giosuè ZILOCCHI (Benetton Rugby, 16 caps)

Gianmarco LUCCHESI (Benetton Rugby, 17 caps)
Marco MANFREDI (Zebre Parma, 3 caps)
Giacomo NICOTERA (Benetton Rugby, 18 caps)

Second rows
Niccolò CANNONE (Benetton Rugby, 36 caps)
Edoardo IACHIZZI (Benetton Rugby, 6 caps)
Federico RUZZA (Benetton Rugby, 49 caps)
Andrea ZAMBONIN (Zebre Parma, 3 caps)

Back rows
Lorenzo CANNONE (Benetton Rugby, 16 caps)
Riccardo FAVRETTO (Benetton Rugby, 1 cap)
Alessandro IZEKOR (Benetton Rugby, uncapped)
Michele LAMARO (Benetton Rugby, 33 caps)
Sebastian NEGRI (Benetton Rugby, 52 caps)
Ross VINTCENT (Exeter, uncapped)
Manuel ZULIANI (Benetton Rugby, 17 caps)

Alessandro GARBISI (Benetton Rugby, 7 caps)
Martin PAGE-RELO (Lione, 4 caps)
Stephen VARNEY (Gloucester, 24 caps)

Tommaso ALLAN (Perpignan, 79 caps)
Paolo GARBISI (Montpellier, 31 caps)

Juan Ignacio BREX (Benetton Rugby, 30 caps)
Tommaso MENONCELLO (Benetton Rugby, 12 caps)
Federico MORI (Bayonne, 13 caps)
Marco ZANON (Benetton Rugby, 16 caps)

Outside backs
Pierre BRUNO (Zebre Parma, 15 caps)
Ange CAPUOZZO (Stade Toulousain, 16 caps)
Monty IOANE (Lione 25 caps)
Simone GESI (Zebre Parma, 1 cap)
Lorenzo PANI (Zebre Parma, 5 caps)

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