Italy 52-8 Namibia: Italy start Rugby World Cup with bonus point victory

Ange Capuozzo of Italy scores a try
The highly rated Ange Capuozzo, playing on the wing, scored Italy’s bonus point try against Namibia.
Italy: (17) 52
Try: Cannone, Garbisi, Lamb, Capuozzo, Faiva, Zuliani, Odogwu The inconvenients: Alan 7 Pen: Alan
Namibia: (8) 8
To try: Sheep Pen: Swanepoel

Italy began their Rugby World Cup campaign with a seven-try, bonus-point victory over Namibia in Saint-Etienne.

Italy’s first-half tries, scored by Lorenzo Cannone and Paolo Garbisi, came with Namibia down to 14.

Gerswin Mouton reduced the African nation’s deficit to nine points.

But Italy prevailed against the tired Namibians after half-time thanks to Dino Lamb, Ange Capuozzo, Hame Faiva, Manuel Zuliani and Paolo Odogwu.

Italy are ubiquitous at Rugby World Cups but have failed to reach the knockout stage in nine previous appearances.

They worked at times but showed some classy moments in the second half, including the long-field effort completed by Capuozzo to earn a try bonus point.

Tougher tests await them though, and they will need to improve on their first performance if they are to upset New Zealand or hosts France and advance to Pool A.

Namibia responded well after contributing to their own early downfall; Hooker Torsten van Jaarsveld saw yellow for smashing an Italian maul near the try line, with Cannone getting the better of the resulting lineout, and Garbisi taking advantage of knocking down a Namibian lineout.

Mouton’s scoring in response was superbly created by fly-half Tiaan Swanepoel and they fought bravely throughout, but Namibia have now lost all 23 World Cup matches they have played since making their debut in 1999.

They next play against the All Blacks in Toulouse on Friday, while Italy won’t play again until September 20, when they will be in Nice to face Uruguay.

Group table A after opening two matches


Italy: Alan; Capuozzo, Brex, Morisi, Ioane; Garbisi, Varney; Fischetti, Nicotera, Ferrari, Lamb, Ruzza, Negri, Lamaro, Cannone.

Replacements: Faiva, Nemer, Riccioni, Sisi, Zuliani, Page-Relo, Odogwu, Bruno.

Namibia: Rossouw; Mouton, Deysel, Burger, Greyling; Swanepoel, Stevens; Sethie, Van Jaarsveld, Coetzee, Ludick, Uanivi, Conradie, Retief, Hardwick.

Replacements: Van der Westhuizen, Benade, Viviers, De Klerk, Gaoseb, Theron, Van der Bergh, Malan.

Sin bin: Van Jaarsveld (10)

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