Jacques Brunel is embarking on his final Six Nations as Italy boss. Photograph: PA

Italy will aim to kick-start a new era in earnest after fielding four debutants for Saturday’s Six Nations clash with France in Paris. Front-row duo (...)

 There is  the sense that things have gone a bit stale after four years of Jacques Brunel’s leadership

Coach: Jacques Brunel Jacques Brunel has given his Italy squad a facelift as he looks to match or better last year’s fifth place finish in what wil(...)

The Italy squad take part in a training session at Cobham RFC,  London. Photograph: Getty Images

After the second World War, tens of thousands of Italians scrambled onto overcrowded ships, carrying nothing but the desire for a peaceful life, far a(...)

Italy’s  Tommaso Allan of Italy looks to release the backs during the  World Cup Pool D match against France  at Twickenham Stadium. Photo:  David Rogers/Getty Images

The old adage that ‘if you have a reputation for getting up early you can stay in bed all day,’ is one to which the Italian backs might subscribe g(...)

Italy’s Sergio Parisse has won his fitness race ahead of his side’s clash with Ireland at the Olympic Stadium. Photograph: Afp

Sergio Parisse has won his fitness battle for Sunday’s crucial World Cup clash with Ireland. The talismanic captain has finally beaten the calf haema(...)

Captain Paul O’Connell and Peter O’Mahony during Ireland squad training at Surrey Sports Park in Guildford, Surrey. Photograph: Dan Sheridan/Inpho

The odds on Ireland delivering a knockout blow to Italy and thus setting up a toe-to-toe pool decider against France in Cardiff a week hence have, if (...)

Italy fullback Luke McLean: “We realise that we will have to be virtually perfect if we’re to have any chance to come away with a win.” Photo: Martin Bureau/AFP/Getty

Luke McLean, Italy’s long-since naturalised Aussie who has played for his adopted country 72 times, is one of only four players in their squad born(...)

Italy backrow Sergio Parisse takes part in a team training session at Cobham RFC, London. Photograph: Getty Images.

Sergio Parisse took some part in his first training session with his Italian team-mates in Cobham yesterday after linking up with them on Tuesday, and(...)

Sergio Parisse has joined up with the Italy squad ahead of Sunday’s clash with Ireland at the Olympic Stadium. Photograph: PA

Sergio Parisse arrived at Italy’s training base in Cobham on Tuesday morning from Paris to link up with his teammates ahead of Sunday’s Rugby World Cu(...)

Martin Castrogiovanni has been dropped as Italy coach Jacques Brunel announced four changes for Saturday’s game against Canada at Elland Road. Photograph: Afp

Italy coach Jacques Brunel has made four changes to his team for the Rugby World Cup Pool D game against Canada in Leeds on Saturday. Props Mic(...)