ITALY 10 IRELAND 63
CJ Stander and Craig Gilroy scored three tries apiece as Ireland picked up a full haul of five match points to get their RBS 6 Nations Championship right back on track.
The disappointment of the loss to Scotland a Murrayfield a week earlier was quickly forgotten as Ireland scored four tries in an industrious first half to secure the bonus point.
Ireland were without captain Rory Best so Niall Scannell will win his first cap at the Stadio Olimpico.
Best failed in his bid to shake off a stomach bug in time to lead Ireland in their second Six Nations clash of the 2017 tournament. Jamie Heaslip skippered Joe Schmidt’s side.
Leinster hooker James Tracy has been drafted in to take a seat on the bench, with Best’s streak of consecutive Six Nations appearances ending at 51.
Keith Earls opened Ireland’s account after 12 minutes following some direct play from the visitors, Jackson converted but Italy hit back immediately with a Carlo Canna penalty.
Munster backrow Stander went over for his first of the afternoon on 18 minutes before his stablemate Earls crossed again on 27 minutes. Ulsterman Jackson converted both for a 21-3 lead.
But Ireland were pinged heavily for collapsing a driving Italian maul, the penalty try awarded and lock Donnacha Ryan sin-binned. Canna converted to leave 11 points between the sides after 331 minutes.
The Irish put the setback behind them quickly, Stander crossing for his second try three minutes later and Jackson’s conversion taking them into the break ahead 28-10 and the first side in the new Championship format to have the bonus point bagged by the interval.
Stander had his hat-trick on 48 minutes before replacement wing Craig Gilroy tore in for a sixth try before Garry Ringrose charged in from the 10m line.
Man of the match Stander’s agricultural kick bounced kindly for Gilroy and the Ulsterman went in for his second of the day.
There was one last Roman flourish from the Irish and Gilroy got his hat-trick.
Jackson made it nine from nine with the conversion.