What are the teams for Italy v Ireland?

Ireland Italy 2022
Rome will play host to the first Round 3 fixture of the 2023 Guinness Six Nations as Italy host Ireland.

Rome will play host to the first Round 3 fixture of the 2023 Guinness Six Nations as Italy host Ireland.

Italy are bidding for a first win over Ireland for a decade, while the visitors are looking to remain on course for their first Grand Slam since 2018.

Last year’s clash saw Ireland canter to a 57-6 victory after Italy were reduced to 13 men inside the opening quarter in Dublin

Italy team news

Paolo Garbisi returns at fly-half as one of three changes to Kieran Crowley’s side from defeat against England in Round 2.

Garbisi has played for the Azzurri just once so far this season and missed the start of the Championship through a sprained ligament in his right knee but returns to spearhead the attack after making his return to action for club side Montpellier last weekend.

The other change in the backline sees Pierre Bruno restored to the wing, which pushes Tommaso Menoncello to inside centre with Luca Morisi dropping to the bench.

The sole change in the forwards comes at tighthead as Simone Ferrari replaces Marco Riccioni.

Ferrari, who started against France in Round 1, links up once more with ever-presents Giacomo Nicotera and Danilo Fischetti.

Niccolò Cannone and Federico Ruzza resume their partnership in the second row, while Sebastian Negri, Michele Lamaro and Lorenzo Cannone form the back row.

Stephen Varney joins Garbisi in the half-back positions, while Juan Ignacio Brex partners Menoncello in the midfield.

The back three is comprised of Bruno, Edoardo Padovani and Ange Capuozzo.

One change on the bench sees Giovanni Pettinelli return as back row cover in place of the injured Jake Polledri, while Crowley has gone with a 5-3 bench split as both Morisi and Tommaso Allan feature in the matchday 23.

Italy team to play Ireland: 15. Ange Capuozzo, 14. Edoardo Padovani, 13. Juan Ignacio Brex, 12. Tommaso Menoncello, 11. Pierre Bruno, 10. Paolo Garbisi, 9. Stephen Varney; 1. Danilo Fischetti, 2. Giacomo Nicotera, 3. Simone Ferrari, 4. Niccolò Cannone, 5. Federico Ruzza, 6. Sebastian Negri, 7. Michele Lamaro (c), 8. Lorenzo Cannone

Replacements: 16. Luca Bigi, 17. Federico Zani, 18. Marco Riccioni, 19. Edoardo Iachizzi, 20. Giovanni Pettinelli, 21. Alessandro Fusco, 22. Luca Morisi, 23. Tommaso Allan

Ireland team news

James Ryan will captain Ireland in the absence of Johnny Sexton, one of a number of changes for the trip to Rome.

Sexton is still recovering from the groin injury that forced him off against France, with Ross Byrne stepping into the starting role as a result.

Andy Farrell has made six changes in all from the team that beat Les Bleus 32-19, with Byrne combining with Craig Casey in the half-backs, the young scrum-half getting the nod over his Munster teammate Conor Murray.

The other change in the back line sees Bundee Aki get a first start of the Championship, with Stuart McCloskey, who was due to be on the bench behind Garry Ringrose, shifting to outside centre after Ringrose withdrew due to injury.

Up front, Ronan Kelleher starts at hooker, having shone off the bench against France, while Iain Henderson will partner Ryan after Tadhg Beirne was ruled out of the remainder of the campaign.

The final change sees Jack Conan come into the back row at No.8, with Caelan Doris shifting to blindside flanker and Peter O’Mahony dropping to the bench.

Elsewhere among the replacements, Dan Sheehan makes his return to the matchday squad, while Ryan Baird steps up as lock cover and Jack Crowley is in line to make his Championship debut.

Ireland team to face Italy: 15. Hugo Keenan, 14. Mack Hansen, 13. Stuart McCloskey, 12. Bundee Aki, 11. James Lowe, 10. Ross Byrne, 9. Craig Casey, 1. Andrew Porter, 2. Ronan Kelleher, 3. Finlay Bealham, 4. Iain Henderson 5. James Ryan (c), 6. Caelan Doris, 7. Josh van der Flier, 8. Jack Conan

Replacements: 16. Dan Sheehan, 17. Dave Kilcoyne, 18. Tom O’Toole, 19. Ryan Baird, 20. Peter O’Mahony, 21. Conor Murray, 22. Jack Crowley, 23. Jimmy O’Brien