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Tests lined up for Italy
16 April 2004, 10:39 am
Italy are to face Romania and Japan in June Tests, the country's rugby federation have announced.
The Azzurri will take on the Romanians in Bucharest on June 26 and four days later they will clash with Japan in Tokyo.
Italy boss John Kirwan, a legendary former winger for the All Blacks, will also pitch his team against New Zealand on November 13, with the home fixture having been announced prior to the two new dates on the calendar.
Philippe Saint-Andre insists his long-term objective for France remains the 2015 World Cup - but in the short-term he knows only too well the value of an RBS 6 Nations victory over Scotland on Saturday.
Italy reiterated the fact that they are closing the gap on the world's elite by their valiant defeat to England, but head coach Jacques Brunel will be desperate for a second win of the RBS 6 Nations against Ireland.
By their own admission they've got there the hard way but Wales have now trained their sights on defending their RBS 6 Nations title - and interim head coach Rob Howley has promised England the warmest of welcomes at the Millennium Stadium.