Italy coach Pierre Berbizier sprung a surprise on Monday by including veteran Alessandro Troncon in his 30-strong group for the November Tests against Tonga, Argentina and Fiji.
The position of the 32-year-old scrum-half was believed to be under threat.
Berbizier clearly believes the Treviso star has a chance to contribute in the RBS 6 Nations campaign and will be hoping the former Azzurri captain performs to a high level this month.
Italy take on Tonga on November 12 at Prato, and then face Argentina seven days later at the Luigi Ferrari stadium in Genoa.
They finish their series with an encounter against Fiji on November 26 at Monza.
Italy squad for the Tests against Tonga, Argentina and Fiji:
Full-backs: Mirco Bergamasco (Stade Francais), Luciano Orquera (Auch).
Wings/Centres: Ludovico Maria Nitoglia (Calvisano), Cristian Stoica (Montpellier), Matteo Barbini (Treviso), Gonzalo Canale (Clermont Ferrand), Matteo Pratichetti (Calvisano), Ezio Galon (Parma Rugby).
Half-backs: Paul Griffen (Calvisano), Alessandro Troncon (Treviso), Ramiro Pez (Perpignan), Pablo Canavosio (Calvisano), Samuele Pace (Viadana), Andrea Scanavacca (Rovigo).
Back row: Sergio Parisse (Stade Francais), Maurizio Zaffiri ( Calvisano), Mauro Bergamasco (Stade Francais), Josh Sole (Arix Viadana), Alessandro Zanni (Calvisano), Aaron Ronald Persico (Agen).
Second row: Marco Bortolami (Narbonne), Carlo Antonio DelFava (Bourgoin), Antonio Pavanello (Benetton Treviso).
Props: Martin Castrogiovanni (Ghial Calvisano), Andrea LoCicero (L'Aquila), Matias Aguero (Viadana), Valerio Bernabo (Calvisano), Carlos Nieto (Viadana).
Hookers: Carlo Festuccia (SKG Gran Parma), Fabio Ongaro (Treviso).