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Italy edge out France in Rome

Italy claimed their first RBS 6 Nations victory over France at the 12th attempt with a 22-21 triumph in Rome.

Racing-Metro full-back Andrea Masi scored the only try for the home side and Mirco Bergamasco kicked 17 points as Italy secured their first win in this year's tournament.

France scored tries through Vincent Clerc and Morgan Parra, with the latter kicking three penalties and a conversion.

The Azzurri, who had eight France-based players in their side, punished the French for a sloppy performance at the Stadio Flaminio.

It was the second defeat in succession for Marc Lievremont's side following their 17-9 loss to England at Twickenham, while Italy were finally rewarded for their efforts following defeats to Ireland, England and Wales.

Italy coach Nick Mallett told BBC1 afterwards: "We're working and improving all the time, I've stuck with the same group over the last three years.

"I've got a great captain in Sergio Parisse - he's been a lone figure over the last four years, but he's now playing with a team where he just has to do his part - today we had 15, 22 players all playing their parts.

"(Alessandro) Zanni was outstanding today, Masi, the full-back, had an excellent game - they were a really good rugby team today."

Captain Parisse echoed his coach's thoughts, adding: "It's a dream today, beating France, we've never beaten them before in the Six Nations.

"I'm really proud and happy for all these people."


From Belfast Telegraph