Italy v Scotland LIVE: Result and reaction from Six Nations as Azzurri hold on for famous win in Rome


Winger Louis Lynagh made himself an instant hero with a try on debut as Italy rallied to beat Scotland 31-29 in a dramatic Six Nations clash and put a huge dent in their opponents’ championship hopes.

The son of former Australia great Michael Lynagh was born in Italy and his try, along with scores from centre Ignacio Brex and replacement scrumhalf Stephen Varney, helped Italy come from 22-16 down at halftime and underline their improvement under new coach Gonzalo Quesada.

Scotland were dominant in the opening half-hour, scoring tries through props Zander Fagerson and Pierre Schoeman and winger Kyle Steyn, but they made numerous errors and could only manage a late try from lock Sam Skinner in the remainder of the game.

Italy forced that pressure with a heroic display as they claimed a first win over Scotland since 2015, and made up to a degree for their 13-13 draw with France last time out when fly half Paolo Garbisi missed a kick at the end of the game to win it.

Relive the Italy vs Scotland thriller in today’s blog below:

Italy v Scotland LIVE: Latest updates from Six Nations

  • Italy beat Scotland 31-29 in Six Nations thriller

  • The Azzurri record a first win over the Scots since 2015 and a first at home sicne 2012

  • FULL-TIME! Italy 31-29 Scotland

  • 78’ - TRY! Skinner dives over to bring Scotland within two points and set up grandstand finale (ITA 31-29 SCO)

  • 57’ - TRY! Varney dummy and snipe gives Italy the lead (ITA 28-22 SCO)

  • 44’ - TRY! Lynagh latches on to Garbisi grubber kick to dive over for debut try (ITA 21-22 SCO)

  • 42’ - NO TRY! Horne score called back after Schoeman blocks Vintcent off the ball (ITA 16-22 SCO)

  • 29’ - TRY! Schoeman burrows over the line (ITA 10-22 SCO)

  • 15’ - TRY! Italy immediately strike back as Brex dots down Page-Relo’s chip (ITA 10-14 SCO)

  • 12’ - TRY! Steyn finishes well after a number of patient Scottish phases (ITA 3-14 SCO)

  • 7’ - TRY! Fagerson powers over from close range (ITA 3-7 SCO)

Scotland suffer Six Nations disaster as thrilling Italy secure famous win

Saturday 9 March 2024 16:38 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Scotland’s Six Nations campaign unravelled in disastrous fashion in Rome as they crashed to a first defeat against Italy since 2015.

Gregor Townsend’s side looked set to tighten their grip on second place – and keep themselves on course for a first top-two finish this century – when they held 14-3 and 22-10 leads in the first half following tries from props Zander Fagerson and Pierre Schoeman either side of a score from Kyle Steyn.

However, the Scots completely lost their way after the interval as they fell to a 31-29 loss against an Italian side who – despite several encouraging displays that helped draw a capacity crowd to the Stadio Olimpico – had not won a Six Nations match since victory in Wales two years ago.

This chastening defeat in the Eternal City is sure to crank up the heat on head coach Townsend five months after exiting the World Cup at the group stage.

Scotland suffer Six Nations disaster as thrilling Italy secure famous win

Juan Ignacio Brex on Italy’s victory

Saturday 9 March 2024 16:27 , Harry Latham-Coyle

“We are really happy,” the centre tells ITV. “We worked hard today and maybe we will have something special after, but we will prepare for the next game and also celebrate today.

“We talked a lot of times about the passion and I think we showed the world we have the passion in the last few minutes of the game - it is not a problem as it is in our blood.

“It means a lot for the movement of Italian rugby. The people need to believe in us and they are showing that they are believing in us.”

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(Getty Images)


Saturday 9 March 2024 16:11 , Harry Latham-Coyle

That Italy win means that Ireland will secure another Six Nations crown with a win of any kind, or draw, against England this evening.

Italy shock Scotland to secure first home win in Six Nations for 11 years

Saturday 9 March 2024 16:09 , Harry Latham-Coyle

What scenes at the Stadio Olimpico.

FT: Italy 31-29 Scotland

Saturday 9 March 2024 16:08 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Remarkable. Scotland were flying into this week off the back of another Calcutta Cup success, and after that fast first quarter, looked to be charging towards a bonus point victory. But Italy grew into the game, and they controlled that second half superbly. So many standouts in Italian blue, but mention must go to Tommaso Menoncello and Ross Vintcent particularly - two titanic performances today.

FT: Italy 31-29 Scotland

Saturday 9 March 2024 16:06 , Harry Latham-Coyle

What a result for Italy - the first win under Gonzalo Quesada and a first at home in the Six Nations since 2013!

Scotland’s title challenge is over - it’s Italy’s day in Rome.


Saturday 9 March 2024 16:05 , Harry Latham-Coyle

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(Getty Images)

Italy 31-29 Scotland, 84 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 16:04 , Harry Latham-Coyle


Italy 31-29 Scotland, 83 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 16:03 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Finn Russell pulls the strings, trying to tug Italy out of alignment. No luck, Kyle Steyn dragged down. 23 phases and counting! A penalty would be enough and they are in range.

Italy 31-29 Scotland, 82 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 16:02 , Harry Latham-Coyle

The clock is dead. Is Kyle Steyn in touch? No, a miraculous offload. Italy are flagging - but Ange Capuozzo manages to shoot out of the line and make a vital tackle. Still Scotland go on.

Italy 31-29 Scotland, 80 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 16:01 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Scotland have to play from deep, bringing their long-striding outside backs into the game, Blair Kinghorn building up a head of steam but dragged down. Funky! A brilliant little chip across field from Finn Russell finds Kyle Steyn scorching up the touchline. Up to halfway - but Scotland need to go another 50 metres...

TRY! Italy 31-29 SCOTLAND (Sam Skinner try, 78 minutes)

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:59 , Harry Latham-Coyle

And Sam Skinner provides it!

Denied a match-winning try against France, but he’s got one here, the replacement lock crashing over from short range under the posts. Finn Russell brings Scotland to within a kick of victory from the tee. It’s a grandstand finish in Rome!

Penalty only! Italy 31-22 Scotland, 77 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:58 , Harry Latham-Coyle

A flapping hand from Federico Ruzza...but just a penalty! Wow. I think he’s slightly fortunate there, with Huw Jones coming on to the ball with an opportunity to break the line.

Still, Scotland opt for the corner. They simply have to score.

Italy 31-22 Scotland, 76 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:56 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Finn Russell cries foul as an Italian hand gets in the way of his pass - was it deliberate? Angus Gardner seems happy with just a knock on advantage. But still Scotland come...knocked on by Duhan van der Merwe with the line in sight! Ange Capuozzo shot out of the line and Van der Merwe fumbled.

Federico Mori charges up field, but doesn’t have the pace to get away. Scotland soon have it back, and win a kickable penalty - with two scores required, Finn Russell will prod for the posts...but not before a TMO check, perhaps for that potential deliberate knock on...

Italy 31-22 Scotland, 74 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:53 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Italy haven’t beaten Scotland in nine years. Scotland will need at least two scores to keep that run going.

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(Getty Images)

PENALTY! ITALY 31-22 Scotland (Paolo Garbisi penalty, 73 minutes)

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:52 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Paolo Garbisi roars! It’s there - Italy lead by eight with seven minutes to play.

Italy 28-22 Scotland, 72 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:51 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Minute by minute, Italy begin to believe. And they have another penalty! A Scottish chaser is in an offside position as he pursues Ali Price’s box kick, and Paolo Garbisi will have the chance to push Italy out beyond a single score.

Italy 28-22 Scotland, 69 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:49 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Delightful handling up the left and Duhan van der Merwe is free. Can he find Ali Price on the inside? No, Ange Capuozzo chops the big wing down. And Price then fumbles as he explores the fringes near a ruck - it’s wasteful from the scrum half, and from Scotland, with time beginning to tick away on their slim Six Nations chances.

Italy 28-22 Scotland, 67 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:46 , Harry Latham-Coyle

What an Italian scrum! Mirco Spagnolo gets into Zander Fagerson and earns Italy a penalty...

...but Gianmarco Lucchesi, who can struggle with his darts, tosses the lineout off-line. Frustrating for Gonzalo Quesada, who slaps his hands in the coaches’ box.

Italy 28-22 Scotland, 65 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:43 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Knocked on by Blair Kinghorn! A sensational tackle from Tommaso Menoncello on the drift, dismantling Kinghorn’s ribcage and jolting the ball free.

Italy 28-22 Scotland, 63 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:42 , Harry Latham-Coyle

A high box kick hits the deck on halfway, with Italian hands deemed to have spilled it. Scotland need to find something - Finn Russell barks some instructions to his backline.

Italy 28-22 Scotland, 61 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:39 , Harry Latham-Coyle

There are changes in both back rows, too, Lorenzo Cannone on for Italy, Matt Fagerson for Scotland.

Italy 28-22 Scotland, 60 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:39 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Scotland are in real bother here. They’ve showed no composure at all since half time. Ewan Ashman is on at hooker and Alec Hepburn at loosehead, while Ali Price has replaced George Horne at scrum half.

TRY! ITALY 28-22 Scotland (Stephen Varney try, 58 minutes)

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:36 , Harry Latham-Coyle

They do! Italy lead!

Stephen Varney snipes and scores! Advantage was coming for a cynical Scottish infringement but the little scrum half didn’t need it, drawing out a defender with a dummy and darting to the line past Andy Christie.

Paolo Garbisi converts.

Italy 21-22 Scotland, 56 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:35 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Ross Vintcent! What a charge from the Italy number eight, scything between Scottish bodies, leaving the chasers trailing in his wake. Surely Italy convert this chance?

Italy 21-22 Scotland, 54 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:32 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Lucchesi carries with purpose in midfield after hitting his lineout, taking Italy into the Scotland 22. But the next wave of forward carriers get themselves in a bit of a muddle - knocked on.

Italy 21-22 Scotland, 52 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:30 , Harry Latham-Coyle

A handful of changes for Italy - Gianmarco Lucchesi is on at hooker for Giacomo Nicotera, and Giosue Zilocchi appears to have replaced Simone Ferrari on the tighthead. Stephen Varney is on at scrum half, too, and will feed a scrum on his own ten-metre line.

Or not, actually - penalty to Italy.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Italy 21-22 Scoltand, 49 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:27 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Italy win a penalty from the lineout and Giacomo Nicotera will throw again 30 metres further up the right touchline. The hooker doesn’t quite connect withi his jumper, though, and Finn Russell tonks a kick upfield after Scotland snaffle the loose possession.

Kyle Steyn very nearly gets to the bouncing ball as Paolo Garbisi waits for it to sit up, but the Scotland win can’t quite cling on in contact.

Italy 21-22 Scotland, 47 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:25 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Scotland spy a sliver of space on the left, and Duhan van der Merwe would appear the ideal man to go about exploiting it, setting off with those familiar murderous strides. But Ange Capuozzo intelligently goes low, using the touchline his advantage and, with a bit of help from a covering Lynagh, forcing the flying Scotsman into touch.

TRY! ITALY 21-22 Scotland (Louis Lynagh try, 44 minutes)

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:21 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Louis Lynagh has a try on Italy debut!

Forza! It’s another canny use of the boot from an Italian to create the score, Paolo Garbisi spotting space in the backfield and threading through an Alessandro del Piero-esque through ball. Lynagh races on to it, collects and grounds.

But that’s rather less good from Garbisi - he’s hit the post again!

NO TRY! Italy 16-22 Scotland, 43 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:21 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Yep, that’s about as clear as it comes. Pierre Schoeman bashes back Ross Vintcent in front of the ball, sending the Italy number eight flying off his feet.

No try.


Saturday 9 March 2024 15:19 , Harry Latham-Coyle

And they are over in an instant? Or are they? Huw Jones slices Italy open and connects with George Horne, but has there been some blocking in the build-up?

Italy 16-22 Scotland, 41 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:18 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Italy clear their lines effectively after a few phases inside their 22, but choose to keep the ball in play, affording Scotland a first rumble in earnest of the half.

Second half...

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:16 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Right, the players are back out there. Can Scotland kill Italy off?

HALF-TIME! Italy 16-22 Scotland

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:06 , Luke Baker

Wow! What a first half we’ve been treated to in Rome. Here’s a few highlights of the best action


Saturday 9 March 2024 15:02 , Harry Latham-Coyle

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Italy 16-22 Scotland, 44 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:01 , Harry Latham-Coyle

But that’s not Scotland’s best attacking idea, running aground on the left and then the right. That’ll be the interval.

Italy 16-22 Scotland, 42 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 15:00 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Italy launch one last offensive in the Scotland 22, but just run out of a bit of puff as the phase count grows. Scotland win a penatly - do they fancy one more dip of their own? They do, Finn Russell finding touch inside the Italy half.

Italy 16-22 Scotland, 40 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:59 , Harry Latham-Coyle

So nearly for Italy! A loose pass from Scotland is dribbled through by Louis Lynagh, Cameron Redpath just getting a hand in to deny the Harlequins wing a collection and score.

Ange Capuozzo is there to pick up the pieces, though, but ends up in the not-so-loving embrace of Duhan van der Merwe, who holds the full-back in a chokehold of sorts to keep both Capuozzo and the ball off the floor in-goal. Scotland’s goalline dropout.

PENALTY! ITALY 16-22 Scotland (Martin Page-Relo penalty, 39 minutes)

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:57 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Three more to Italy’s tally from the tee.

Italy 13-22 Scotland, 38 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:56 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Italy thump the penalty quickly, but fail to find touch, the ball bouncing back into play. George Turner has visions of a 60-metre scamper, but the hooker is felled quickly, and a horrible cleanout attempt from little George Horne is rightly penalised.

Italy 13-22 Scotland, 37 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:54 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Italy make good progress up the right and just about keep the ruck secure, Louis Lynagh driven back initially in the counter but re-steeling himself.

But there goes Andy Christie! The flanker collects a loose ball and goes striding away, holding off Monty Ioane. Juan Ignacio Brex hauls him down, and bounces on to the ball to win a penalty - was there a clear release? Perhaps not, but referee Angus Gardner was happy.

PENALTY! ITALY 13-22 Scotland (Paolo Garbisi penalty, 35 minutes)

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:52 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Another nice strike from Paolo Garbisi. Italy sticking in there.

Italy 10-22 Scotland, 33 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:51 , Harry Latham-Coyle

A penalty for Italy inside the Scotland half as Andy Christie fails to vacate a ruck. What’s the call - points or corner? Points, it appears, Michele Lamaro throwing an arm out in the vague direction of the uprights.

Italy 10-22 Scotland, 32 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:49 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Italy have just been unable to hold territory so far, those silly penalties and turnovers in the middle third allowing Scotland to control the flow of action. That’s a bit better, though, Juan Ignacio Brex pushing Scotland back with a grubber off his left peg. It tumbles out six metres from the Scotland line...but Italy curiously elect not to contest George Turner’s throw, and Scotland clear.

TRY! Italy 10-22 SCOTLAND (Pierre Schoeman try, 29 minutes)

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:45 , Harry Latham-Coyle

And Pierre Schoeman is the buried beneficiary at the bottom of the maul!

Italy had bodies behind the ball but couldn’t get through to it, Scotland’s long-limbed back five doing their job at the front to allow their front row to stay hidden at the back. Schoeman gives it a final shunt, and Scotland have a third.

A rare miss from Finn Russell from the tee.

Italy 10-17 Scotland, 26 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:44 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Bosh! Tommaso Menoncello takes the autostrada, accelerating up into top gear and into the Scottish defensive line, who handle him appropriately.

A floaty pass from Martin Page-Relo is picked off by Andy Christie, and Finn Russell cannily kicks for the corner. It’s a 50:22, too - Scotland’s lineout to throw.

PENALTY! Italy 10-17 SCOTLAND (Finn Russell penalty, 25 minutes)

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:42 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Finn Russell nudges Scotland three points further in front.

Italy 10-14 Scotland, 24 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:41 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Monty Ioane is the second Italian wing to have his dreams dashed by the whistle of Angus Gardner, intercepting and setting off for glory on an 80-metres sprint. Alas, Italy had infringed early in the movement, Ross Vintcent making a tackle from the floor.

Italy 10-14 Scotland, 22 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:40 , Harry Latham-Coyle

A higher hoist from Russell, and a better one, Duhan van der Merwe getting beneath it and using his bulk to make certain of possession. Scotland fail to secure the ruck, though, and Italy clear long up the centre of the pitch.

But that’s poor from the hosts, needlessly infringing at a ruck with Scotland playing somewhat aimlessly inside their own half.

Italy 10-14 Scotland, 21 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:38 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Andy Christie holds the width on the left and waits for a Finn Russell cross kick, which for once is not quite pinpoint. One club too many from the fly half, lifting his approach over a leaping Christie on the touchline. A shame - there was space in front of the flanker, who is a real athlete.

Italy 10-14 Scotland, 19 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:36 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Louis Lynagh thinks he is dashing away to a first international score, hacking ahead a loose ball after a couple of teammates had caused some breakdown bother. But there had been a fumble on the floor just before Lynagh put his toe through it - he’s called back and it will be Scotland’s scrum.

Italy 10-14 Scotland, 18 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:35 , Harry Latham-Coyle

A jaunty little opening quarter, then, with both sides rather enjoying the bright Roman sunshine. Here’s that opening Scottish score.

TRY! ITALY 10-14 Scotland (Juan Ignacio Brex try, 16 minutes)

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:32 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Can they ever!

A delighful Italian score! Hooker Giacomo Nicotera breaks away from the maul and finds Martin Page-Relo, who appears to have three runners to pick to his outside. But the scrum half produces something altogether more extravagant, deftly dropping boot to ball and lifting delicately over the approaching Scottish defensive line.

Juan Ignacio Brex wins the race and just about holds on as he squeezes past the post padding to the line. Fabulous thinking and execution from Italy.

Italy 3-14 Scotland, 14 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:31 , Harry Latham-Coyle

So after that strong first minute for Italy, it’s been all Scotland. Can the hosts produce something from a lineout on the fringes of the Scottish 22?

TRY! Italy 3-14 SCOTLAND (Kyle Steyn try, 12 minutes)

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:28 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Scotland are over again!

This is a worrying start for Italy, who have been totally unable to slow the visitors down on attack. Duhan van der Merwe scythes between a couple of tacklers on the left, perhaps aided by a teammate easing a defender out the way, and Scotland keep their calm and continuity from there.

Kyle Steyn has the long strides and powerful finish required to capitalise on the right, shrugging Ange Capuozzo off his shoulders like a weary parent shedding themselves of an unruly toddler. Another Finn Russell conversion makes Scotland’s start all the better.

Italy 3-7 Scotland, 10 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:27 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Scotland play out into midfield from the lineout, and it’s crisp and clean from their centres, Huw Jones making the half-break and offloading to Kyle Steyn. Jones is on the ball again as Scotland move into the Italian 22, but fumbles as he attempts to free his arms for another pass out of contact. Italy clear - but not to touch, and back Scotland will come.

Italy 3-7 Scotland, 9 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:26 , Harry Latham-Coyle

That’s a third Test try in 66 caps for Zander Fagerson, who really has become a pillar of solidity on the right side of the Scottish scrum.

Italy look in a frisky mood, playing with tempo but running into trouble. Monty Ioane jinks and jives away from a ruck but is corraled, and Scottish hands get to the breakdown ball to win a penalty.

TRY! Italy 3-7 SCOTLAND (Zander Fagerson try, 7 minutes)

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:23 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Try given!

Zander Fagerson gets over. It was all a little harum-scarum to start from Scotland, but theey focussed well in the 22, playing with accuracy and intensity. Fagerson has support from Rory Darge and Scott Cummings and biffs his way through.

Finn Russell converts.

Italy 3-0 Scotland, 6 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:23 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Redpath goes close up the left touchline, hauled down a metre short. Turner punches closer, and then a forward triptych seem to have got there...

Italy 3-0 Scotland, 5 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:22 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Helter-skelter stuff from Scotland but they eventually make progress, tossing the ball about with abandon and (just about) keeping a handle on it. George Horne keeps the tempo high, George Turner setting a platform on the carry and then Cameron Redpath charging into the Italian defensive line. Pressure building.

Italy 3-0 Scotland, 3 minutes

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:21 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Ange Capuozzo has a little adventure up the right, but Scotland have him handled. Martin Page-Relo’s first box kick is shallow, sliced shrot of his intended destination, and knocked on by Italian hands. Scotland will play from a scrum wide on the left in the Italy half.

PENALTY! ITALY 3-0 Scotland (Paolo Garbisi penalty, 2 minutes)

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:19 , Harry Latham-Coyle

A horrible flashback for Paolo Garbisias the ball falls off the tee as he prepares to strike - but unlike against France, it’s straight and true. Italy open the scoring.

Italy 0-0 Scotland, 1 minute

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:18 , Harry Latham-Coyle

And that’s an excellent start from Italy, immediately over the ball and earning a jackal turnover. Andy Christie was a little isolated on the carry, and Tommaso Menoncello seized his chance.

Paolo Garbisi will go for goal.


Saturday 9 March 2024 14:17 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Italy in blue, Scotland in white - the penultimate weekend of the 2024 men’s Six Nations is about to begin.

Angus Gardner has the whistle, Paolo Garbisi has the ball. A peep of the whistle, a drop onto the boot. We are up and running in Rome.

Italy v Scotland anthems

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:14 , Harry Latham-Coyle

A typically punchy Italian anthem. Right, let’s get into it.

Italy v Scotland anthems

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:12 , Harry Latham-Coyle

It looks, as promised, an excellent crowd in Rome, with plenty of travelling Scots in town - including a good contingent of those who supported the charity bike ride in memory of the late, great Doddie Weir.

Italy v Scotland

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:07 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Here they come, the two sets of players readyying themselves in the tunnel and striding out into the Roman amphitheatre.

Everything you need to know about Italy v Scotland

Saturday 9 March 2024 14:00 , Luke Baker

After coming within a couple of feet of a famous victory against France, Italy will hope for another encouraging performance as Scotland come to Rome.

Gonzalo Quesada’s side were the width of a post away from winning in Lille a fortnight ago as they continue to show promise under their new coach.

But the Scottish side will be full of confidence after another Calcutta Cup win and hoping to keep the Six Nations alive.

While Ireland will secure another crown with a full five points at Twickenham regardless of Scotland’s result, Gregor Townsend’s team will hope to put the pressure on with a trip to Dublin to come on the final weekend.

Here’s everything you need to know:

Italy v Scotland live stream: How to watch Six Nations online and on TV

Italy v Scotland

Saturday 9 March 2024 13:58 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Where might Italy look to get at Scotland today? Cameron Redpath is a fine centre but he and Huw Jones don’t have quite the same relationship that Jones has with Sione Tuipulotu, and with Tommaso Menoncello and Juan Ignacio Brex in midfield, the hosts have two intelligent, thrusting centres to try and cause problems.

Why Scotland’s fate could be out of their hands

Saturday 9 March 2024 13:49 , Jamie Braidwood

A win is a must for Scotland today, but the championship could be decided this evening regardless of their result. Here’s what Ireland need at Twickenham later to keep the Six Nations crown in Dublin for another year.

What do Ireland need to win the Six Nations against England this weekend?

Italy v Scotland

Saturday 9 March 2024 13:49 , Luke Baker

Scotland have landed in Italy and are ready to go at the Stadio Olimpico. We’re about 25 minutes from kick-off.

Gregor Townsend says there is still more to come from Scotland in Six Nations

Saturday 9 March 2024 13:40 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Gregor Townsend is desperate to see Scotland hit their maximum performance levels over the next two weekends as they bid to secure a first top-two finish in the Six Nations era.

The Scots are second in the championship table – a point ahead of England and three above France – as they prepare for matches away to Italy this Saturday and Grand Slam-chasing Ireland the following week.

Townsend has seen his team defeat Wales and England while going agonisingly close to defeating the French, but he still feels they are yet to hit top gear for any sustained period.

Gregor Townsend says there is still more to come from Scotland in Six Nations

Italy v Scotland match officials

Saturday 9 March 2024 13:32 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Referee: Angus Gardner (Aus)

ARs: Karl Dickson (Eng) & Adam Leal (Eng)

TMO: Marius van der Westhuizen (SA)

Italy v Scotland referee: Who is Six Nations official Angus Gardner?

Michele Lamaro warns Italy not to get carried away

Saturday 9 March 2024 13:26 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Michele Lamaro believes Italy are steadily progressing but he will not be getting carried away by their spirited display away to France last time out until he sees evidence that they can back it up.

The Azzurri go into today’s clash buoyed by drawing 13-13 with Les Bleus in Lille a fortnight ago - and they would have pulled off an historic victory if Paolo Garbisi’s last-gasp penalty had not come back off a post.

However, captain Lamaro has endured enough false dawns while representing Italy to ensure he maintains a degree of caution amid the growing excitement that has played a part in 70,000 tickets being snapped up for the Stadio Olimpico clash.

“We managed to draw in France, but the previous week we had been on the floor after losing 36-0 to Ireland,” pointed out the Benetton back-rower.

“The perception is that one week we are heroes, the next we are a word that it’s probably better I don’t say.

“Those perceptions do not reflect reality. There are always going to be highs and lows in a team’s journey, but I believe we are heading in the right direction.

“We are growing little by little and we certainly have more chance of winning a game now than was the case two years ago or even last year.

“But we need to remember that before the game against Wales last year (a 29-17 home defeat), we were having more or less the same conversation.

“And then in the game, we saw that there were still many things that we needed to improve.

“It’s not something that happens overnight, we need to grow slowly and never get carried away, because every time we have got carried away and believed ourselves to be on the verge of taking that next step forward, we’ve always found ourselves with our face on the floor.

“If we want to be competitive and cause difficulties for other teams, we need to fight with everything that is in us and put the best version of ourselves on the field.

“That’s not always easy, because being at 100 per cent in every game is something that probably no athlete can ever achieve.

“But it’s when you get to a stage where you being at 95 per cent is enough to beat other teams, that’s when you start to achieve important results.

“We’re getting there. We’re heading in the right direction.”

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Scotland team news

Saturday 9 March 2024 13:19 , Harry Latham-Coyle

With Sione Tuipulotu absent due to injury, Gregor Townsend hands Cameron Redpath a start outside of Bath teammate Finn Russell, while George Horne is picked at scrum half with Ben White rested and out of the 23 entirely. Andy Christie gets the nod on the blindside after impressing as a replacement and for Saracens this season, and it is a a bulky bench with six forwards ready to provide punch if required.

Scotland XV: 1 Pierre Schoeman, 2 George Turner, 3 Zander Fagerson; 4 Grant Gilchrist, 5 Scott Cummings; 6 Andy Christie, 7 Rory Darge (co-capt.), 8 Jack Dempsey; 9 George Horne, 10 Finn Russell (co-capt.); 11 Duhan van der Merwe, 12 Cameron Redpath, 13 Huw Jones, 14 Kyle Steyn; 15 Blair Kinghorn.

Replacements: 16 Ewan Ashman, 17 Alec Hepburn, 18 Elliot Millar-Mills, 19 Sam Skinner, 20 Jamie Ritchie, 21 Matt Fagerson; 22 Ali Price, 23 Kyle Rowe.

Italy team news

Saturday 9 March 2024 13:15 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Former England squad member Louis Lynagh is set to make his Italy debut on the wing as he prepares to move to Benetton from Harlequins at the end of the season. Tommaso Menoncello returns to the centres after shifting to the back three for the draw with France, while Sebastian Negri is a significant returnee on the blindside.

Simone Ferrari replaces Giosue Zilocchi at tighthead in a forward pack full of carrying potential with number eight Lorenzo Cannone back on the bench after injury.

Italy XV: 1 Danilo Fischetti, 2 Giacomo Nicotera, 3 Simone Ferrari; 4 Niccolo Cannone, 5 Federico Ruzza; 6 Sebastian Negri, 7 Michele Lamaro (capt.), 8 Ross Vintcent; 9 Martin Page-Relo, 10 Paolo Garbisi; 11 Monty Ioane, 12 Tommaso Menoncello, 13 Juan Ignacio Brex, 14 Louis Lynagh; 15 Ange Capuozzo.

Replacements: 16 Gianmarcu Lucchesi, 17 Mirco Spagnolo, 18 Giosue Zilocchi, 19 Andrea Zambonin, 20 Lorenzo Cannone; 21 Stephen Varney, 22 Leonardo Marin, 23 Federico Mori.

Italy v Scotland team news

Saturday 9 March 2024 13:10 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Kick off is creeping ever closer in Rome. Let’s take a closer look at the two line-ups this afternoon....

Club colleagues collide at full-back

Saturday 9 March 2024 13:00 , Harry Latham-Coyle

One intriguing little subplot today will be the full-back battle between Ange Capuozzo and Blair Kinghorn, now club colleagues of course at Toulouse. The Top 14 club have a frankly ludicrous four first-choice international 15s in their ridiculous squad - France’s Thomas Ramos and Argentina’s Juan Cruz Mallia are the others.

Capuozzo and Kinghorn are very different in stature but equally devastating in the open field, Capuozzo showing off his electricity and intelligence with that try against France a fortnight ago and Kinghorn making a strong return from injury against England. You’d imagine Scotland, whose kick metres are up massively in this championship, will try to test an Italian back three that includes a debutant who has only been in camp for a couple of weeks - Capuozzo will have to marshall the backfield shrewdly.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

Italy v Scotland talking points: History beckons for Duhan van der Merwe

Saturday 9 March 2024 12:45 , Harry Latham-Coyle

There is every chance of Scottish history being made in Rome this weekend. Duhan Van Der Merwe moved within one of Scotland’s record try-scorer Stuart Hogg when he scored a match-defining hat-trick against England at Murrayfield last time out. A single score will be enough to take the South Africa-born wing level with Hogg on 27, but in his current form – five tries in his last three Six Nations matches – few would bet against him doing enough at the Stadio Olimpico to break the record outright. Hogg, incidentally, is set to be watching on from the stand after completing a fundraising cycle to the Italian capital in aid of the My Name’5 Doddie charity.

Key talking points as Scotland prepare to face Italy in Guinness Six Nations

Italy v Scotland live stream: How to watch Six Nations online and on TV

Saturday 9 March 2024 12:35 , Jamie Braidwood

When is Italy vs Scotland?

Italy vs Scotland is due to kick off at 2.15pm GMT on Saturday 9 March at the Stadio Olimpico in Rome.

How can I watch it?

Viewers in the United Kingdom can watch the match live on ITV1, with coverage on the channel from 1.30pm GMT. A live stream will be available via ITVX.

If you’re travelling abroad and want to watch major sporting events, you might need a VPN to unblock your streaming app. Our VPN round-up is here to help and includes deals on VPNs in the market. Viewers using a VPN need to make sure that they comply with any local regulations where they are, and also with the terms of their service provider.

Italy v Scotland talking points: Chance for trio to shine

Saturday 9 March 2024 12:30 , Harry Latham-Coyle

There is an element of freshness to the Scotland team this weekend as Townsend has handed opportunities to three players who have been regular squad members in recent seasons but who are not accustomed to starting in the dark blue. Burgeoning Bath centre Cam Redpath makes his fourth Scotland start in place of the injured Sione Tuipulotu, Glasgow scrum-half George Horne has been handed his first start since the 2019 World Cup as Toulon’s Ben White gets the weekend off to rest, while in-form Saracens back-rower Andy Christie has finally been rewarded with first international start two years after making his debut at home to France.

Andy Christie has been in good form for Saracens this season (Getty Images)
Andy Christie has been in good form for Saracens this season (Getty Images)

Italy v Scotland talking points: Full house at the Olimpico

Saturday 9 March 2024 12:15 , Harry Latham-Coyle

The Stadio Olimpico regularly hosts capacity crowds for football matches, such as Thursday’s Europa League showdown between Roma and Brighton, but it is far more unusual for the iconic bowl in the north-west of the Eternal City to sell out for rugby matches. It is a sign of the relative buoyancy of both of these nations, therefore, that almost 70,000 tickets have been sold for Saturday’s match.

Italy will enjoy being back at home in front of a full house (Getty Images)
Italy will enjoy being back at home in front of a full house (Getty Images)

Italy v Scotland talking points: Scots in hunt for rare top-two finish

Saturday 9 March 2024 12:00 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Scotland have not finished in the top two of the championship since winning the last staging of the Five Nations in 1999. They arrive in Rome knowing a victory will keep them on course to do so for the first time in the 21st century. Gregor Townsend’s team are currently second in the table – a point ahead of England and three above France – with two matches to play. While they still have an outside chance of pipping Ireland to the title, finishing second appears to be a more realistic target.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

What are smart mouthguards and how are they being used in the Six Nations?

Saturday 9 March 2024 11:45 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Round two of the Six Nations featured a historic moment as Scotland hooker George Turner became the first player in the championship’s history to be removed after his smart mouthguard detected a collision which could have caused a concussion.

Turner was removed from the pitch during the first half of Scotland’s defeat to France for a head injury assessment after his mouthguard alerted medical staff of a significant head acceleration event after a tackle made on Charles Ollivon. The front rower passed his assessment and returned to the field.

The mouthguards, also known as gumshields, have been incorporated into the existing HIA protocols as another tool designed to support the drive towards better player welfare with a particular focus on brain injuries.

Sensors within the mouthguard measure head impacts and accelerations/decelerations. Current regulations state that for men’s players, an impact above 70g and 4,000 radians per second squared will recommend a HIA. For players in the women’s game, the first threshold is lower – 55g.

The Six Nations is the highest-profile competition in which the technology has been used after it was introduced at WXV in the autumn. A more widespread implementation is considered likely.

What are smart mouthguards and how are they being used in the Six Nations?

Gregor Townsend questions ‘unfair’ Six Nations rules after being denied access to Finn Russell

Saturday 9 March 2024 11:30 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Gregor Townsend has questioned the “unfair” rules that mean that Scotland’s English-based players must return to their clubs during the Six Nations fallow weeks.

Townsend expressed his frustration at the player release regulations after his side secured a fourth successive Calcutta Cup victory at Murrayfield.

Scotland’s preparation for the fixture had been hampered by the unavailability of Finn Russell and other key individuals, who were not able to remain in camp during the first off weekend and again returned to their clubs ahead of this fixture.

Gregor Townsend questions ‘unfair’ Six Nations rules after Scotland beat England

Italy v Scotland match officials

Saturday 9 March 2024 11:15 , Harry Latham-Coyle

And the fact he is on the whistle today is a good excuse to share this excellent insight into Angus Gardner’s preparation process from World Rugby’s outstanding Whistleblowers documentary, which went behind-the-scenes with the world’s top officials at the World Cup in the autumn.

Italy v Scotland match officials

Saturday 9 March 2024 11:00 , Harry Latham-Coyle

It wil be Australia’s Angus Gardner on the whistle at the Stadio Olimpico today, with the experienced South African Marius van der Westhuizen in the TMO truck. England’s Karl Dickson, himself a Test ref, is a useful assistant, and Adam Leal is highly rated by the Rugby Football Union (RFU) as he makes his own strides into the international game.

Referee: Angus Gardner (Aus)

ARs: Karl Dickson (Eng) & Adam Leal (Eng)

TMO: Marius van der Westhuizen (SA)

Six Nations referees: Who are the match officials for the tournament?

Centre Huw Jones: I was ‘tempted’ by move to France before committing to Glasgow

Saturday 9 March 2024 10:30 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Scotland centre Huw Jones revealed he was “tempted” by the prospect of a move to France but he ultimately felt that remaining with buoyant Glasgow was the right decision for his career overall.

The on-form 30-year-old was the subject of recent interest from Top 14 side Montpellier and was also linked with Bayonne.

However, he ended speculation about his future last week by signing a new two-year deal to commit his future to Warriors until 2026.

Centre Huw Jones: I was ‘tempted’ by move to France before committing to Glasgow

Pete Horne gives insight into Scotland wing Duhan Van Der Merwe’s driven mindset

Saturday 9 March 2024 10:15 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Pete Horne has given an insight into the driven mindset of record-chasing Scotland wing Duhan Van Der Merwe ahead of the Guinness Six Nations showdown with Italy in Rome.

The 28-year-old’s match-defining hat-trick against England a week past Saturday took him to 26 international touchdowns, within one of Stuart Hogg at the top of the Scots’ list of all-time try-scorers.

Van Der Merwe could equal or break the record if he crosses the whitewash at the Stadio Olimpico.

Pete Horne gives insight into Scotland wing Duhan Van Der Merwe’s driven mindset

Rory Darge: Duhan van der Merwe will not be distracted by Scotland record

Saturday 9 March 2024 10:00 , Harry Latham-Coyle

After a scintillating hat-trick in the Calcutta Cup, Duhan van der Merwe needs just two scores to surpass Stuart Hogg as Scotland’s top try-scorer in Test history. But co-captain Rory Darge insists that the wing won’t be distracted from the main task at hand.

Rory Darge: Duhan van der Merwe will not be distracted by Scotland record

Louis Lynagh to make Italy debut

Saturday 9 March 2024 09:45 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Louis Lynagh, the son of former Australia flyhalf Michael, will make his debut for Italy in their Six Nations meeting with Scotland after head coach Gonzalo Quesada named the wing in his team on Thursday.

Lynagh was born in Italy and has played at Under-20 level for England where he grew up. He will play his club rugby at Benetton in Italy next season, with his signing from Harlequins confirmed last month.

With Lynagh in at wing, Tommaso Menoncello moves back to centre alongside Ignacio Brex, with Federico Mori dropping to the bench.

Sebastian Negri returns to the side after the flanker missed the last two games through injury, replacing Riccardo Favretto. Prop Simone Ferrari comes in for Giosue Zilocchi in the only other change from last month’s draw against France.

Ross Vintcent, who made his first start in the last game against France, keeps his place at number eight, and Martin Page-Relo is again preferred at scrumhalf, with Stephen Varney named on the bench.

 (Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

George Horne handed rare start as Scotland make three changes for Italy clash

Saturday 9 March 2024 09:30 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Scrum half George Horne has been handed a surprise start for Scotland’s Six Nations showdown with Italy in Rome on Saturday, with Gregor Townsend making three changes to his starting XV.

The 28-year-old Glasgow back has been given the nod to wear the number nine jersey for the first time since the 2019 World Cup. Regular starter Ben White is rested and drops out of the squad altogether, with Ali Price – who has played no part in the tournament – promoted to the bench.

Saracens flanker Andy Christie is handed his first international start in place of Jamie Ritchie, who is among the substitutes.

George Horne handed rare start as Scotland make three changes for Italy clash

Gregor Townsend says there is still more to come from Scotland in Six Nations

Saturday 9 March 2024 09:15 , Harry Latham-Coyle

Gregor Townsend is desperate to see Scotland hit their maximum performance levels over the next two weekends as they bid to secure a first top-two finish in the Six Nations era.

The Scots are second in the championship table – a point ahead of England and three above France – as they prepare for matches away to Italy this Saturday and Grand Slam-chasing Ireland the following week.

Townsend has seen his team defeat Wales and England while going agonisingly close to defeating the French, but he still feels they are yet to hit top gear for any sustained period.

Gregor Townsend says there is still more to come from Scotland in Six Nations

Italy v Scotland LIVE: Latest build-up and updates from Six Nations

Saturday 9 March 2024 09:00 , Harry Latham-Coyle

A very good morning and welcome to The Independent’s coverage of another huge day of Six Nations action. We’ve reached the business end of this edition of rugby’s most storied championship with just two rounds to come, six fixtures to decide the destination of a most coveted crown.

Round four begins in Rome, where Scotland know they need a victory to keep their slim title hopes alive. Gregor Townsend’s side continued their Calcutta Cup supremacy against England last time out and will expect another strong performance - though Italy are unlikely to shirk the challenge in front of them.

It was cruel ending for Gonzalo Quesada and his team in Lille as Paolo Garbisi’s kick thumped against the upright to deny the Azzurri a famous victory, but a draw still represented a positive result for a group finding their way under their new coach. Can they build on that performance and shock Scotland? Kick-off is at 2.15pm GMT.