Italy, under coach Paul Broadbent, have named a 39-man train-on squad for their opening game in European Championship B against Ukraine, on 5th July in Gemona.
It is the first time that rugby league has been taken to the area and FIRL are hoping to put on a good show for the locals in the region.
The squad, principally made up of domestic-based players, includes full back Fabrizio Ciaurro – the Euro Shield player of the tournament last year – and back rower Gioele Celerino, who both played against England in last autumn’s RLWC warm up game, dramatically won by the Italians, along with Warrington Wolves youngster James Saltonstall.
Assistant coach Kelly Rolleston said: “This year’s European Championship gives us a chance to continue the good work done here over the last few years.”
“We expect a very competitive tournament with newcomers Ukraine showing some excellent form in their opening matches with Russia and Serbia. Our aim is to blood more young players into our squad and with some new U18 activity we hope to bring our best young players up to an international standard.”
This weekend sees the start of the 2014 Serie A competition with four games taking place, alongside the launch pf the U18s fixtures.
In addition, FIRL are also running Level 1 coaching and match officials courses in Piacenza.
ITALY TRAIN-ON SQUAD
Simone Boscolo, Gialuca Ferro, Alden Filipovic, Edoardo Paluello, Giacomo Simioni (Arieti Este), Ray Nasso, Romain Pavoni (Avignon XIII), Remi Fontana (Carpentras), Nicola Facco, Nicola Reffo (Grifons Padova), Christophe Calegari (Lezignan Corbieres), Pierangelo Ceretti, Cosimo Corvino, Sebastian Gurra, Thomas Piscitelli, (Lions Brescia), Gioele Celerino, Chris De Meyer, Gert Peens, Riccardo Scandurra, (NW Roosters), Mauro Pettenello (Padova 555), Jonathon Marcinczak (Racing Club Albi), Joel Miranda (Realmont), Chris Vitalini (South Wales Scorpions), Fabrizio Ciaurro, Michele Verardi (Tirreno Sharks), Matthew Bradley (University of Gloucestershire All Golds), James Saltonstall (Warrington Wolves), Nourou Bance, Ivan Barani, Fabio Berzieri, Riccardo Dodi, Giovanni Franchi, Octavian Ilinca, Drake Muyodi, Fabio Nannini, Daniel Stead, (XIII del Ducato), Idammou El Medhi, Luca Cerza, Andrea Sola (XIII della Ghirandina)