KSA Shark ©

Italy (19) v England (23) (F/T)

Written by Andre Bosch (KSA Shark ©)

Posted in :Admin on 10 Feb 2008 at 16:06

England were dealt another crushing fitness setback as their troubled RBS 6 Nations campaign rolled into Rome.

Sporting Life reports that Captain Phil Vickery, who had been troubled by a calf muscle problem since Thursday, was a late withdrawal due to a stomach bug.

It meant Bath lock Steve Borthwick taking over as England skipper for the first time, with his club colleague Matt Stevens packing down at tighthead prop and uncapped Bristol forward Jason Hobson joining the replacements.

England, beaten at home by Wales last weekend, had already lost Mike Tindall, David Strettle, Andrew Sheridan, Lewis Moody and Tom Rees from their plans before Vickery cried off.

Former Bradford Bulls rugby league star Lesley Vainikolo made his full England debut on the wing, while flanker Michael Lipman was handed a first Six Nations start in a back-row that also included recalled World Cup number eight Nick Easter.

Italy coach Nick Mallett made one change from the side narrowly beaten by Ireland in Dublin last Saturday, fielding Overmach Parma’s Ezio Galon on the left-wing.

England, who were greeted by warm sunshine at Stadio Flaminio, had won on all four of their previous visits to the ground, averaging just over 46 points a time.


  • Okay so coming from someone with 4 Pom jerseys THIS is BIG!.

    GO ITALY!!!!!!

  • Comment 1, posted at 10.02.08 16:10:24 by KSA Shark © Reply
    KSA Shark ©
  • Come on Big Matt!!! Crush those Iti’s!

  • Comment 2, posted at 10.02.08 16:10:29 by Vinnie Reply
  • Hope Nick Mallets Italianos roll over the Poms today.

  • Comment 3, posted at 10.02.08 16:11:13 by PaarlBok Reply

  • lol PB. Seems you and me shouting for different teams today!

    You watching the game?

  • Comment 4, posted at 10.02.08 16:12:01 by Vinnie Reply
  • Vinnie you shouting for the Poms?

    I see that the Italy TMO gave a try that should never have been yesterday. (England are probably really pissed that he wasn’t doing the RWC Final 🙂 )

  • Comment 5, posted at 10.02.08 16:12:57 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
    15 David Bortolussi
    14 Kaine Robertson
    13 Gonzalo Canale
    12 Mirco Bergamasco
    11 Ezio Galon
    10 Andrea Masi
    9 Pietro Travagli
    1 Andrea Lo Cicero
    2 Leonardo Ghiraldini
    3 Martin Castrogiovanni
    4 Santiago Dellape
    5 Carlos Del-Fava
    6 Josh Sole
    7 Mauro Bergamasco
    8 Sergio Parisse
    Carlo Festuccia
    Salvatore Perugini
    Carlos Nieto
    Alessandro Zanni
    Simon Picone
    Andrea Marcato
    Alberto Sgarbi

  • Comment 6, posted at 10.02.08 16:13:40 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • Yeah defo for the poms. Heading to the pub in a bit to watch with some english boys.

    Adopted country and all of that.

  • Comment 7, posted at 10.02.08 16:14:08 by Vinnie Reply
  • Bit of an unknown side… to me at least!

  • Comment 8, posted at 10.02.08 16:14:45 by Vinnie Reply
    15 Iain Balshaw
    14 Paul Sackey
    13 Jamie Noon
    12 Toby Flood
    11 Lesley Vainikolo
    10 Jonny Wilkinson
    9 Andy Gomarsall
    1 Tim Payne
    2 Mark Regan
    3 Matthew Stevens
    4 Simon Shaw
    5 Steve Borthwick
    6 James Haskell
    7 Michael Lipman
    8 Nick Easter
    Lee Mears
    Jason Hobson
    Ben Kay
    Luke Narraway
    Richard Wigglesworth
    Daniel Cipriani
    Mathew Tait

  • Comment 9, posted at 10.02.08 16:15:15 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • Enjoy Vinnie.

    Azzuri are not going to be pushovers, but the Poms have Wilko in the side. Gives any team a 5-10 point advantage.

  • Comment 10, posted at 10.02.08 16:16:32 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • Vins I have to go for a net session with my small kid. He plays his first game tomorrow with pads and hard ball tomorrow and batting 3 bowling 2, some work for Pa to round him off.

    We have some donderweer rain today, so holding tumbs the netts is dry enough!

  • Comment 11, posted at 10.02.08 16:16:50 by PaarlBok Reply

  • I went to sandy beach today! Life is good

  • Comment 12, posted at 10.02.08 16:24:49 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • i though Sandy beach was in die Kaap? Or is that Sandy bay?

  • Comment 13, posted at 10.02.08 16:31:42 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • thought NOT though 🙄

  • Comment 14, posted at 10.02.08 16:33:54 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • Sorry. I meant A sandy beach. Didn’t think you got them on this island

  • Comment 15, posted at 10.02.08 16:34:26 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • The sun is shining in Rome as Bortolussi starts the game to Gomarsall who clears well to halfway. Italy enjoy the early possession but are struggling to make headway out of their half..

  • Comment 16, posted at 10.02.08 16:36:35 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • Oh okay. 😆

  • Comment 17, posted at 10.02.08 16:37:10 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 5
    SACKEY TRY CONVERTED BY WILKINSON! 0-7! Referee Alain Rolland penalises England but Ghiraldini’s throw is too long..here comes Wilkinson with a chip and gather! What an offload to the supporting Sackey who races away to score! That will shush the critics.

  • Comment 18, posted at 10.02.08 16:38:10 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • I went to Brighton Beach, Margate and Ramsgate – English East Coast. Rocks and stones for a beach. AARRGGHHH!

  • Comment 19, posted at 10.02.08 16:38:16 by hellbent Reply

  • 7
    BORTOLUSSI PENALTY! 3-7! Stevens is now penalised immediately from the restart which hands the Azzurri a chance to cut the lead..great kick!

  • Comment 20, posted at 10.02.08 16:39:13 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • Yip Rocks on a beach SUCK.

  • Comment 21, posted at 10.02.08 16:39:55 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 9
    Ghiraldini throws short this time on England’s 22 as Italy look to test the white defence. But that’s a poor chip from Masi which Sackey covers well to mark – Wilkinson clears again.

  • Comment 22, posted at 10.02.08 16:44:29 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • and they wanted to drop wilkinson, poms are crazy.

  • Comment 23, posted at 10.02.08 16:45:06 by cab Reply

  • 12
    BORTOLUSSI PENALTY! 6-7! Flood now shows before almost sliding through a gap on halfway. He’s hauled down though and the ball is turned over with Travagli waiting to put in. Parisse picks and chips behind Vainikolo – looking to test the winger – and he holds on! Another shot for Italy to close to within one point..no mistake.

  • Comment 24, posted at 10.02.08 16:46:07 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • quickened up his hands too, ultimate pro.

  • Comment 25, posted at 10.02.08 16:46:53 by cab Reply

  • Wilko is an asset to almost any team even when he is having an average day.

  • Comment 26, posted at 10.02.08 16:47:42 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • Cab

    I agree 100%

    Wilko is the best 10 in World Rugby IMO. maybe not AT the moment, but he is not afraid to tackle clears well at rucks, KICKS like a mule with pin point accuracy……

  • Comment 27, posted at 10.02.08 16:49:17 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 14
    Parisse claims Wilkinson’s restart with a superb take before Bortolussi clears to the half. Now England look to utilise Vainikolo to suck in a couple of tacklers close to the ruck before they go wide!

  • Comment 28, posted at 10.02.08 16:49:46 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 16
    FLOOD TRY CONVERTED BY WILKINSON! 6-14! Bortolussi has a clearing kick charged down and Noon is after this! He flicks it to his Falcon team-mate Wilkinson who in turn hands it to Flood…good pace from the centre and he rounds Masi to extend the lead!

  • Comment 29, posted at 10.02.08 16:51:04 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • Problem with wilko is that he is held up to a VERY high standard and anything below is criticised.

    That said, he is playing a shedload better this week than last!

    Bortolussi also not having a bad game by any standards…

  • Comment 30, posted at 10.02.08 16:51:11 by Vinnie Reply
  • I am rather pissed at being stuck in a hotel room not being able to see this match. 😥

    The good news is that i am going home tomorrow and will be home for the Sharks v Force match next week. 😎 😛

  • Comment 31, posted at 10.02.08 16:54:58 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 18
    Italy pack down 20 out before they go back to Bortolussi for an attempted drop-goal…just wide from the full-back! England now turn the ball over and are looking threatening racing away with Balshaw and Haskell involved!

  • Comment 32, posted at 10.02.08 16:56:30 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 20
    Now Vainikolo is powerful down the left as England get to within five of the whitewash. That was a glimpse of what the big man brings to the party! England continue to test…

  • Comment 33, posted at 10.02.08 16:57:37 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 22
    Rolland eventually blows for Italy being offside and Wilkinson immediately points to the posts. Cool head from Jonny..but he fails to move England further ahead this time!

  • Comment 34, posted at 10.02.08 17:00:53 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 24
    Wilkinson now tries another delicate chip, looking for Flood, but Italy are alive to that tactic this time on halfway. However, England have possession once again as they continue to apply the squeeze…

  • Comment 35, posted at 10.02.08 17:02:03 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 26
    Now Italy break from an Easter mistake until play is slowed and the move fizzles out – frustration for the home fans!

  • Comment 36, posted at 10.02.08 17:04:46 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 31
    WILKINSON PENALTY! 6-17! Canale now runs down a dark alley and Payne gobbles him up, forcing a penalty on the visitors’ 22. England subsequently move back into opposition territory before Borthwick is pulled down in the lineout..chance Wilkinson..the lead is now eleven!

  • Comment 37, posted at 10.02.08 17:07:44 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 34
    Lipman eventually claims the restart before Wilkinson’s poor kick is returned terribly by Bortolussi..far too much on that one from the full-back and England will look to strike with the scrum restart. Another score here and surely Ashton’s man will be out of sight!

  • Comment 38, posted at 10.02.08 17:10:36 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • KSA,
    yip very good flyhalf, only thing he doesn’t really have is the pace.

  • Comment 39, posted at 10.02.08 17:13:21 by cab Reply

  • 36
    WILKINSON PENALTY! 6-20! Rolland penalises Castrogiovanni in his ongoing battle with Payne! He looks very bemused does the Leicester prop as Wilkinson sends over another three from 45 metres!

  • Comment 40, posted at 10.02.08 17:16:08 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • Cab.

    Him and Butch. 🙁

    Only thing he has more of than Butch is the goal kicking IMO.

    Surely this must be it for Italy. I suppose expecting England to lose to italy is a bit far fetched…..

  • Comment 41, posted at 10.02.08 17:18:02 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 38
    A mistake from Easter at the restart gifts Italy a chance to hit back before the break! However, the Italians are yet to find their rhythm this afternoon as they’re driven back close to halfway…

  • Comment 42, posted at 10.02.08 17:18:20 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • yeah, Butch is very good too, rekon he breaks the line better then wilkinson and has longer toe on his punts, but yeah wilkinson for posts in his prime was pretty unbeatable and his BMT is huge.

  • Comment 43, posted at 10.02.08 17:23:06 by cab Reply

  • Half time

    Italy 6 – 20 England

    A bridge to far now IMO

  • Comment 44, posted at 10.02.08 17:25:12 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • When we were watching the S14 Final in Dbn, Murph was sitting next to me and he was carrying on about how Butch should be a loosie because of his great cleaning out at the rucks. 😀

    Murph was still sober at that stage, so he was being serious………….

  • Comment 45, posted at 10.02.08 17:27:11 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • lol nick mallett doesn’t look happy, italy need to score again.

  • Comment 46, posted at 10.02.08 17:32:25 by cab Reply

  • 42
    Wilkinson starts the second period with England holding a healthy fourteen-point advantage. Sole is in possession for Italy before Canale breaks the first line as they move into opposition territory.

  • Comment 47, posted at 10.02.08 17:32:54 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 44
    BORTOLUSSI PENALTY! 9-20! Shaw is looking slightly dizzy following a clash of heads with Parisse..but he is going nowhere and packs down just inside the England half. However, Payne is penalised again for not binding and Italy close the gap!

  • Comment 48, posted at 10.02.08 17:36:35 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 46
    Noon now runs a smart angle off Wilkinson as England probe on halfway. Gomarsall now senses it’s time to test Bortolussi with a dink down the right wing..the chasing Sackey knocks him backwards as the English look to secure possession.

  • Comment 49, posted at 10.02.08 17:40:16 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 49
    A little niggle starts to enter the game with Italy adjudged the innocent party. This is the hosts’ big chance to apply huge pressure! But there’s solid turnover work from the England pack and Italy have to come from 50 metres once again.

  • Comment 50, posted at 10.02.08 17:42:04 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 52
    Canale spins it out with the ball eventually ending up in Del Fava’s arms. He only knows one way and that’s straight and hard! Now Castrogiovanni adds his muscle on the half before England’s defence makes Mike Ford purr!

  • Comment 51, posted at 10.02.08 17:44:22 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 55
    BORTOLUSSI PENALTY! 12-20! Noon was a major player in that impressive period of defence and has felt the full force of the Italians as blood streams from his head – Tait is on for now. This is really hotting up with the next score crucial! Italy have a penalty for a collapsed maul..and Ghiraldini applauds the England pack!

  • Comment 52, posted at 10.02.08 17:45:52 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 59
    WILKINSON PENALTY! 12-23! England now manage to gain a few close metres and they’re rewarded as Del Fava’s hands are all over that ruck! It’s a gimme for Wilkinson and the visitors are on the board in the second period!

    Oops got a little sidetracked there. 😳

  • Comment 53, posted at 10.02.08 17:52:47 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 61
    Wigglesworth is now on for Gomarsall and spins the ball back to Wilkinson who clears to halfway. This entralling game enters its final quarter now as Mi Bergamasco charges through a gap! Much better rugby from the Azzurri as they move to within 30..

  • Comment 54, posted at 10.02.08 17:54:10 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 63
    Balshaw’s turnover clearance is very poor and gifts lineout possession back to Italy 25 out. But the new hooker Festuccia has his throw pinched and Wilkinson steps up to the plate and clears well!

  • Comment 55, posted at 10.02.08 17:56:28 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 65
    However, England pull down the Italian lineout and what a mistake that could be as Bortolussi sends play to within five metres! But Festuccia is off-target again and Wigglesworth duly clears well..

  • Comment 56, posted at 10.02.08 17:58:44 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 68
    The game has become extremely fragmented with mistakes marring both side’s play. And Ashton has opted to freshen things up as Cipriani is on for Wilkinson. The clock is ticking for Italy!

  • Comment 57, posted at 10.02.08 18:03:04 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 70
    More lineout offences from England here as Haskell closes the gap on halfway! Italy could be in here..a beautiful, flat ball to Robertson leaves the wing with a one-on-one against Balshaw wide out! But Noon does superbly to dive and clip the attacker’s foot, which brings about a fumble!

  • Comment 58, posted at 10.02.08 18:06:32 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • well now, 4 points in it, 3 mins to go.

  • Comment 59, posted at 10.02.08 18:09:32 by cab Reply

  • 72
    Mallett is calling on the remainder of his changes with one last throw of the dice in Rome! Italy utilise the powerful Bergamasco in midfield but England have managed to turn that one over and kick possession away!

  • Comment 60, posted at 10.02.08 18:09:38 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 76
    PICONE TRY CONVERTED BY BORTOLUSSI! 19-23! Replacement Marcato might make England pay here as he finds a superb touch, which pushes England back into their 22. The lineout is solid..but what a disaster from Cipriani and Borthwick’s men as a whole! The youngster’s chip-kick is charged-down and we have a grandstand finish!

  • Comment 61, posted at 10.02.08 18:11:52 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 78
    Italy are gifted a penalty now for offside as Ashton looks very worried up in the stands! Picone spins the resulting lineout out but Italy are lacking ideas and opt to kick long to Balshaw who marks…poor return from Balshaw – one final shot for the Azzurri!

  • Comment 62, posted at 10.02.08 18:16:15 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • 80
    But Festuccia’s throw is overdone and Italy are left on their own line as the final whistle blows! What a game at the Stadio Flaminio with serious questions hanging over England – but a win is a win! Credit to the Italians in the second period who remain alongside Scotland at the foot!

  • Comment 63, posted at 10.02.08 18:17:43 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©

    Italy 19 – 23 England

  • Comment 64, posted at 10.02.08 18:19:00 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • Wow. Close game at the end. Mallett’s boys will take the scots

  • Comment 65, posted at 10.02.08 18:49:24 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • Mallet will turn that Italianos good, just given time. Good luck Vinnie!

  • Comment 66, posted at 10.02.08 19:01:41 by PaarlBok Reply

  • The Sanyo version of “The Little and Large Show” made sure the Wild Knights ended the regular Top League season unbeaten on Saturday.

    So this means Epi Taione and Tony Brown will have to wait a little longer before coming to SA.

    They now have the Semi’s and then probably the Finals to play before being released to come to SA.

  • Comment 67, posted at 10.02.08 23:00:18 by KSA Shark © Reply

    KSA Shark ©
  • Crap! That’s not good

  • Comment 68, posted at 10.02.08 23:15:12 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • Lol re Cipriani’s kick that was charged down for the Italian try!

    I was amazed last week at the public cries for Johnny to be axed after one of a handful of poor games in nearly 9 years of service & match-winning performances for the lilywhites…I mean his “poor game” is still better than many Bok perfomances in a 10 jumper – think Louis Koen, Chris Rossouw (thanfully that was limited to sub appearance), Andre Pretorius on a bad day, Derek Hougaard vs Aus etc etc…

    Cipriani is talented, but overrated at this stage. He was made to look VERY ordinary in his first Heineken Cup game vs Munster at the beginning of the season, & is still very wet behind the ears at this level IMO… Boy that bubble was first in his 13 min appearance today… Doubt there will be anymore calls to axe Wilko during the 6N this week… BUT the axe must be hovering perilously close to Ashton’s neck – the imbecile Brian Moore (quite possibly the most unobjective, lispy commentator ever) was positively frothing at the mouth!

    All MOST amusing for a Bok supporter!

  • Comment 69, posted at 11.02.08 00:26:35 by Le Requinny Reply
  • Evening Quinn

  • Comment 70, posted at 11.02.08 00:48:33 by robdylan Reply
    Competition Winner Administrator
  • Form the Daily Mail:

    “Legend is taken off. Boy Wonder saunters on. Boy Wonder drops almighty clanger to concede a try. Legend suddenly seems safe at No 10.

    Jonny Wilkinson burst through the 1,000-point barrier for England yesterday in a city rich in emblems of decline. But two assists for tries and 13 points with the boot could not shelter him from the mild indignity of being substituted with almost 15 minutes left in favour of Danny Cipriani, the skull-capped glamour puss whose claim on the fly half’s jersey has featured in the winter’s best selection tussle.”


  • Comment 71, posted at 11.02.08 13:20:54 by Le Requinny Reply

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