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New Italy rugby coach Jacques Brunel names 4 uncapped players to 30-man Six Nations squad

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ROME - Four uncapped players were included in Italy's 30-man squad for the first Six Nations games against France and England.

New coach Jacques Brunel held onto 22 players from the Rugby World Cup.

He gave first-time callups on Monday to Aironi prop Alberto De Marchi, Crociati centre Luca Morisi, Aironi winger Giovambattista Venditti and 18-year-old winger Angelo Esposito from one of the Italian federation's academies.

Having signed a four-year deal to replace Nick Mallett, Brunel declared at his presentation in November that he wants Italy to become a Six Nations contender within three years.

Italy will visit France on Feb. 4, then host defending champion England in the Stadio Olimpico a week later.

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Italy: Forwards: Martin Castrogiovanni, Lorenzo Cittadini, Alberto De Marchi, Andrea Lo Cicero, Leonardo Ghiraldini, Tommaso D'Apice, Marco Bortolami, Quintin Geldenhuys, Antonio Pavanello, Cornelius van Zyl, Robert Barbieri, Mauro Bergamasco, Paul Derbyshire, Simone Favaro, Sergio Parisse, Alessandro Zanni. Backs: Edoardo Gori, Fabio Semenzato, Kristopher Burton, Luciano Orquers, Tommaso Benvenuti, Gonzalo Canale, Luca Morisi, Alberto Sgarbi, Angelo Esposito, Roberto Quartaroli, Giulio Toniolatti, Giovambattista Venditti, Andrea Masi, Luke McLean.

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