Belfast Telegraph

Tuesday 22 July 2014

Bergamasco: We deserve to be here

Mirco Bergamasco

Mirco Bergamasco felt Italy finally answered their critics in the best possible way with Saturday's historic triumph over France in the RBS 6 Nations.

Bergamasco, who is on the books of Racing-Metro Paris, kicked 17 points to fire the Azzurri to a come-from-behind 22-21 victory in Rome.

"We didn't like certain comments made by the French press, who have in recent years questioned our right to compete in the Six Nations," Bergamasco said. "Without a doubt, we definitely deserve to be in this tournament."

Bergamasco showed nerves of steel against France as he slotted two crucial penalties to put Italy in front for good.

"I was shaking after I missed my second penalty attempt," Bergamasco admitted. "But then I told myself I would not miss any more kicks and that was the case."

Bergamasco and Co had reason to be ecstatic as Italy had failed in their previous 11 attempts to beat Les Bleus in the tournament.

The win was also the Azzurri's first of the year.

Italy were only beaten 13-11 by Ireland in their opener and were then trounced 59-13 by unbeaten England at Twickenham.

The Azzurri had gone into their final game in Rome with a 24-16 home defeat to Wales.

"This victory is the most beautiful of all," Bergamasco said. "It's the one victory that has given us the most satisfaction."