Italy rugby team beats Wales ending seven year losing streak

Ange Capuozzo

 CARDIFF – After 36 consecutive Six Nations match defeats, the Italian rugby team beat Wales 22-21 with a spectacular last minute break by ‘elfin’ Capuozzo, reaffirming their place in the annual competition, sports sources said. It was also the first time in history Italy has beaten Wales in Cardiff.

 Italian players and supporters were ecstatic after the final whistle blew in Principality Stadium on Saturday. After seven years of not winning a single Six Nations match, with many debating why they were still competing, the Azzurri finally proved that they deserve to play against Europe’s top rugby nations.

 The moment of victory happened at 77 minutes in, when the 71 k.g. Ange Capuozzo skillfully evaded two Welsh tackles and sped towards the try line, before a smart pass to Edoardo Padovani who scored the try behind the goal posts, making for an easy conversion. With the score at 20-21 to Wales, the conversion was crucial to breaking their string of defeats.

 Fly-half Paolo Garbisi quickly booted the ball through the centre of the posts before spinning and falling to the ground with emotion and his team mates piled on top of him.

 “There is nothing accidental about today's victory,” said Italy’s captain, Michele "Mitch" Lamaro. “Everyone did their individual work very well, putting it at the service of the team, and this has finally paid off.”

 The Azzurri’s coach, Kiwi Kieran Crowley, said, “we are very happy, and I am very happy for these guys, who really deserved it. However, this victory must not be so surprising, although obviously very important: this group worked a lot and with absolute dedication throughout the tournament.”

 President of the Italian Rugby Federation Marzio Innocenti said, "today's is a historic victory, but it must not be taken as a sporadic episode, but as a starting point.”

 “It comes thanks to a lot of work by these players, this staff, and the whole federation,” added Innocenti. “It is right that the boys celebrate, but as president I will unfortunately have to tell them that the road is still long.”

 “In any case, on [Italian] Father's Day, I can say that after the birth of my children, this is perhaps the best day of my life.”



Edoardo Padovani
Paolo Garbisi