Six Nations

Italy claim last gasp win

2015-02-28 18:36
Italy (AFP)

Edinburgh - A penalty try with just 28 seconds left on the clock has earned Italy only their second ever Six Nations win on the road in a tense contest at Murrayfield.

The Italians were trailing 19-15 and facing their third defeat of the season when Irish referee George Clancy awarded them their third try of the game after the backpedalling Scotland pack pulled down a threatening maul close to the home line.

That put Sergio Parisse's side ahead 20-19 but, for good measure, replacement stand-off Tommaso Allan added the conversion to confirm a third defeat out of three this season for Scotland, the country he represented at age group level.

Italy's only other Six Nations victory away from home also came at Scotland's expense, a 37-17 success in 2007.

When the Italian achieved that famous victory they were 21-0 up inside the opening six minutes.

This time it was Scotland who got off to a flying start, Scotland's scrum-half and captain Greig Laidlaw landing a penalty after Simone Favaro, Italy's openside flanker, was punished for coming in at the side of a ruck with just 17 seconds on the clock.

That was bad enough for Italy but they proceeded to shoot themselves in the foot in the eighth minute. In trying to find Parisse with a pass on the Scotland 10m line, their New Zealand-born outside half Kelly Haimona only succeeded in furnishing possession to Scotland centre Mark Bennett, who raced clear to score under the posts.

Laidlaw added the conversion, stretching the Scottish lead to 10-0 but Italy swiftly halved the gap.

George Biagi, the Zebre lock who was born in Scotland and educated at Fettes College in Edinburgh, won a line-out on the right and the Italian pack, superbly orchestrated by Parisse, drove 30 metre for the Australian born second row Josh Furno to score.

Haimoa pushed the conversion attempt wide but after Laidlaw nailed another penalty for Scotland, the big Italian outside half ended a run of five successive place-kicking misses in the competition with a penalty success from 35m in the 18th minute.

A third Laidlaw penalty made it 16-8 to the home side in the 27th minute but Italy cut the gap to 16-15 three minutes before half time after a bizarre passage of play.

Haimona struck a penalty against the right-hand post and in the scramble to gather the loose ball Venditi managed to dot it down next to the left post for a try confirmed after referee George Clancy consulted Television Match Official Graham Hughes.

Haimona added the conversion but five minutes into the second half he made way for Allan, the Perpignan outside half who switched allegiance to Italy after playing for Scotland at under 20 level.

Allan whose uncle, John Allan, played for Scotland - had the chance to put Italy ahead in the 53rd minute but his penalty kick drifted wide of the posts.

Scotland might have gained some breathing space on the scoreboard in the 62nd minute but the pass with which veteran winger Sean Lamont fed a 'scoring' pass to full-back Stuart Hogg was clearly forward. Still, Scotland claimed the first points of the second half five minutes later, Laidlaw landing a fourth penalty.

With 90 seconds to play, though, the Scots were reduced to 14 men after replacement lock Ben Toolis was yellow carded on his debut for collapsing an Italian maul.

Then, with 28 seconds to go, the steamrollering Italian pack forced the penalty try that clinched a dramatic victory.



15 Stuart Hogg, 14 Tommy Seymour, 13 Mark Bennett, 12 Alex Dunbar, 11 Sean Lamont,10 Peter Horne, 9 Greig Laidlaw (captain), 8 Johnnie Beattie, 7 Blair Cowan, 6 Rob Harley, 5 Jonny Gray, 4 Tim Swinson, 3 Euan Murray, 2 Ross Ford, 1 Alasdair Dickinson

Substitutes: 16 Fraser Brown, 17 Ryan Grant, 18 Geoff Cross, 19 Ben Toolis, 20 Hamish Watson, 21 Sam Hidalgo-Clyne, 22 Greig Tonks, 23 Matt Scott


15 Luke McLean, 14 Michele Visentin, 13 Luca Morisi, 12 Enrico Bacchin, 11 Giovambattista Venditti, 10 Kelly Haimona, 9 Edoardo Gori, 8 Sergio Parisse (captain), 7 Simone Favaro, 6 Francesco Minto, 5 Joshua Furno, 4 George Fabio Biagi, 3 Dario Chistolini, 2 Leonardo Ghiraldini, 1 Matias Aguero.

Substitutes: 16 Andrea Manici, 17 Alberto De Marchi, 18 Lorenzo Cittadini, 19 Marco Fuser, 20 Samuela Vunisa, 21 Guglielmo Palazzani, 22 Tommaso Allan, 23 Giulio Bisegni

Read more on:    italy  |  scotland  |  six nations  |  rugby


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