Italy head coach Conor O'Shea was delighted for both the country's players and supporters after their 20-18 victory over South Africa.
The Azzurri saw off the struggling Boks by scoring three tries on Saturday in Florence, in what could prove to be a springboard for future success.
O'Shea, the former Harlequins boss, took charge of Italy back in June and the nation suffered a heavy defeat to the All Blacks last weekend.
However they bounced back with aplomb on Saturday, scoring three tries before holding on for a famous result.
"I'm so happy for the players and all the fans," he said.
"For us, this is just a start but it's a very good one. We still have much to do to change the rugby in Italy, but we have the right potential and ability to do it.
"We still have a lot to do and work to improve, there are the conditions to make this country a great national rugby side."
Italy captain Sergio Parisse highlighted how in previous years his team might have found themselves in a similar position before missing out on the result, but not this time.
"I am extremely proud to win, we have won a historic match against the Springboks," he said.
"We faced a national great, that even in a time of trouble, is a team with great ability. For years, we were close to winning big games like this, but failed to bring home the result.
"This time we kept up the concentration up minute by minute, taking home a historic victory. "Now we have to enjoy this historic victory, but we must continue to work to improve ourselves yet."