Andrea Masi and Italy aiming to pile more misery on France

The Azzurri are surprisingly targeting a third successive home win over Les Bleus

Sergio Parisse, who  wins an Italian record 112th cap against France, Martin Castrogiovanni and Andrea Masi of Italy before the England match at at Twickenham. Photograph: Getty Images

Sergio Parisse, who wins an Italian record 112th cap against France, Martin Castrogiovanni and Andrea Masi of Italy before the England match at at Twickenham. Photograph: Getty Images

 

Italy centre Andrea Masi has delivered a warning to France ahead of tomorrow’s Six Nations clash between the countries in Rome.

The Azzurri, fresh from beating Scotland at Murrayfield last time out, are chasing a third successive Six Nations home win at Les Bleus’ expense.

“The first time ( France) lost, in 2011, they thought it was just one of those things, but the second time gave them real doubts,” said Wasps back Masi.

“A third time will show them that they have to change their attitude towards Italian rugby. But none of us would pretend that we are favourites for the game on Sunday. We may have earned a little bit of respect from France, but our objective is still to earn it for good.”

Concentration levels

There are also call-ups for wing Leonardo Sarto and flanker Samuela Vunisa, while captain Sergio Parisse wins an Italian record 112th cap, moving ahead of secondrow forward Marco Bortolami.

“Winning is important because it gives you self-belief,” Masi added.

“It gives you the feedback that you are doing things right and that the work you do in training will be repaid on the field.

“It gives you calmness and control during your week’s work. It helps you to raise your concentration levels and drives you to train better.”

For his part, France head coach Philippe Saint-Andre has made eight changes from the side beaten by Wales last time out.

The struggling coach has called up the likes of centre Gael Fickou, scrum-half Sebastien Tillous-Borde and prop Nicolas Mas.

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