Italy coach Nick Mallett has made two changes to his side after losing the first three matches in this season's RBS Six Nations.
Now his team face defending champions Wales in Saturday's RBS Six Nations game at Rome's Stadio Flaminio, desperate for a win, or even a try. Italy have not crossed the whitewash since a late score in Round 1 against a tiring England team who had already secured victory
But Mallett has not pressed panic button and shown faith with the majority of the side that lost 26-6 to Scotland in Edinburgh last time out.
to Leicester prop Martin Castrogiavanni is dropped to the bench, Gloucester's Carlos Nieto starting at tight-head.
Overmach Parma full-back Giulio Rubini, 21, is given a first start on the wing, Mirco Bergamasco moving back to centre with Gonzalo Garcia missing out. Uncapped Roberto Quartaroli is also brought onto the bench.
Rubini won his first cap as a replacement in last month's 26-6 defeat to Scotland, the Murrayfield loss having followed earlier reversals to England and Ireland.
Azzurri full-back Andrea Masi was last week ruled out of the Wales game because of injury. Masi, who missed the match against Scotland through suspension, has been struggling with a back injury.
Italy: Andrea Marcato; Giulio Rubini, Gonzalo Canale, Mirco Bergamasco, Matteo Pratichetti; Luke McLean, Paul Griffen; Salvatore Perugini, Leonardo Ghiraldini, Carlos Nieto, Santiago Dellape, Marco Bortolami, Alessandro Zanni, Mauro Bergamasco, Sergio Parisse (capt).
Replacements: Franco Sbaraglini, Martin Castrogiovanni, Carlo Antonio Del Fava, Josh Sole, Pablo Canavosio, Luciano Orquera, Roberto Quartaroli.
Angus O'Brien has quickly settled into the Wales Sevens squad after solid performances in Hong Kong and Japan. With two rounds remaining in Glasgow and Twickenham on the World Series, WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie chats to the rising star.
Wales winger Luke Morgan has established himself as one of the deadliest finishers on the Sevens World Series. WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie catches up with him on the eve of this weekend's round in Glasgow.
All roads lead to Cardiff on Sunday for the SSE SWALEC Finals Day at the Millennium Stadium. Cambrian Welfare tackle Ystradgynlais in the Bowl final, Ystrad Rhondda play Newcastle Emlyn in the Plate final while defending champions Pontypridd face Bridgend in the Cup final.
WRU Chief Executive Roger Lewis, Deputy Minister for Culture, Sport and Tourism Ken Skates and WRU Chairman Gareth Davies earlier this week launched a new competition in conjunction with the WRU unveiling its archive room.
Welsh players and management joined Deputy Minister for Sport Ken Skates at the Pierhead Building, Cardiff Bay earlier this week to reveal the Union's pioneering school-club hub initiative has been so successful the project will now almost double the scale of the original project.
The Scarlets, Newport Gwent Dragons, Cardiff Blues and the Ospreys look ahead to Judgement Day III which sees the Blues take on the Ospreys (2.30) and the Dragons tackle the Scarlets (4.45pm) at the Millennium Stadium tomorrow afternoon.
Ystradgynlais and Ynysddu played out a titanic struggle at Taffs Well in the SSE SWALEC Bowl semi-final. At the end of the game neither team could be separated after a 15-15 stalemate but Ystradgynlais go through on try count.
Blues strike first in JD III battle - Newport Gwent Dragons lock Andrew Coombs, WRU referee Dylan Llyr Jones and Cardiff Blues hooker Matthew Rees decide dressing room allocations for Judgement Day III
Wales Under 18 captain Calum Haggett has received a conditional offer to read Biomedical Science at St Anne's College, Oxford. WRU chairman Gareth Davies went to meet Calum and Coleg y Cymoedd Principal Judith Evans to wish him luck in his exams and pass on some of his personal experience.