RUGBY: Zebre call in six permit players for trip to Belfast

Tommaso Castello will captain Zebre
Tommaso Castello will captain Zebre

Zebre left Parma on Thursday morning for Ireland where the Italian franchise will face Ulster in Belfast on Friday night.

After two weekends off due to the November internationals that have seen Italy lose to New Zealand and beating South Africa last Saturday in Florence, the Guinness PRO12 returns.

Zebre are without 12 internationals capped by the Italian national team ahead of Saturday’s match against Tonga in Padua.

The Parma based coaching staff have called six permit players who plays for clubs taking part in the main Italian league Excellence included in the 23: Including three starters Balocchi, Chiesa and Pettinelli.

Back in the squad for the match against Ulster are several player who recovered from their injuries since the last official game in Parma against Leinster ago.

There is a first seasonal selection for italian international Bellini who will start at the left wing along with full-back Berryman: the kiwi utility back gains his first 2016/17 cap after a long injury absence.

In the second row unit, Koegelenberg and Bernabò are available for selection after missing the last three games.

Centre Castello will lead the italian side for the first time in Belfast, while on the bench there are two uncapped players who could earn their Guinness Pro12 debut: hooker Luus – U20 Italian international at last World Rugby U20 World Cup- and flanker Licata, this season part of the main Italian Rugby Union U20 academy “Ivan Francescato” of Parma.


15 Dion Berryman

14 Simone Balocchi*

13 Matteo Pratichetti

12 Tommaso Castello (cap)

11 Mattia Bellini

10 Alberto Chiesa*

9 Guglielmo Palazzani

8 Derick Minnie

7 Johan Meyer

6 Giovanni Pettinelli*

5 Federico Ruzza*

4 Gideon Koegelenberg

3 Dario Chistolini

2 Carlo Festuccia

1 Bruno Postiglioni

Replacements :

16 Luhandre Luus*

17 Andrea De Marchi

18 Guillermo Roan

19 Valerio Bernabò

20 Giovanni Licata*

21 Carlo Engelbrecht

22 Maicol Azzolini*

23 Lloyd Greeff