Preview: Treviso v Cardiff Blues

Date published: November 3 2016

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Treviso have names their team to face Cardiff Blues in the PRO12 at Stadio Monigo on Friday.

Jayden Hayward will wear the number 15 jersey, with Michael Tagicakibau and Angelo Esposito on the wings. Tommaso Benvenuti and captain Alberto Sgarbi will form the centre combination.

Tito Tebaldi will play scrum-half while Ian McKinley will be his half back partner at 10.

The front row will consist of Nicola Quaglio, Luca Bigi and Simone Ferrari. The locks are Filippo Gerosa and Dean Budd.

Finally, the back row sees Marco Lazzaroni, Abraham Steyn, and Marco Barbini completing the starting XV.

Willis Halaholo will make his Cardiff Blues debut as Danny Wilson makes eight changes for the trip to face Benetton Treviso.
 
The Super Rugby-winning centre arrived last month and has now enjoyed more than a full week of training with his new region. He partners former Hurricanes teammate Rey Lee-Lo in the centre, with Wales U20s star Rhun Williams also in line for his regional debut.
 
Wilson said: "He may take a little time to settle into the way we play, the structures and the rest of it, especially in the heat of the moment, but from an individual point of view he looks a class act.
 
"Most people who have watched him play will say his attacking strength is pretty obvious. He is powerful, he has good footwork and he played starting centre in the Hurriances side that have just won the Super Rugby title so he comes with good pedigree."
 
Six of the seven players release from Wales training go straight back into the starting line-up. In the back line, Williams on the wing and namesake Lloyd Williams in the number nine jersey.
 
Up front Rhys Gill and Scott Andrews pack down either side of captain Matthew Rees and Sam Warburton and Ellis Jenkins start on the flanks, with Kristian Dacey on the bench.
 
The Blues lost last season's corresponding fixture but have already won in Italy once in the current campaign and are determined to do so again following three consecutive Championship defeats.
 
Wilson added: "We have worked on having a bit more urgency on attack and defence, getting into our attacking shape a bit quicker than against the Scarlets and likewise into our defensive positions.
 
"Treviso are a very different proposition at home to what they are away, you only get a grip of that once you experience it. They are a tough side to beat at their place. We will go there with a group that will learn from being out there and that experience, but with a target to win the game.
 
"It's a big achievement when you go to those places and win. It was certainly a big achievement going to Zebre and winning. We go to Treviso and our aim is exactly the same. If you are going to be challenging for things and in the top six, those are the types of games you go and win.
 
"As we know many sides go to Treviso and slip up or find it very difficult.  We are not taking this lightly, we know it will be a great win if we can get it."

Form: Treviso have lost their last three matches in the PRO12 since beating the Dragons at Stadio Monigo on 23 September. The Italians have won three of their last four home games against Welsh opponents in 2016. ? Cardiff Blues began the PRO12 season with four straight victories but have now slipped to three successive defeats. The Welshmen have lost only one of their last six away games in all tournaments: 24-46 at Ospreys in Round 6 of the PRO12. The last four meetings between the two sides have all been won by the home side on the day, whilst Blues have not been victorious at Stadio Monigo since March 2012.  

The teams:

Treviso: 15 Jayden Hayward, 14 Michael Tagicakibau, 13 Tommaso Benvenuti, 12 Alberto Sgarbi (c), 11 Angelo Esposito, 10 Ian McKinley, 9 Tito Tebaldi, 8 Marco Barbini, 7 Abraham Steyn, 6 Marco Lazzaroni, 5 Dean Budd, 4 Filippo Gerosa, 3 Simone Ferrari, 2 Ornel Gega, 1 Nicola Quaglio.
Replacements: 16 Ornel Gega, 17 Alberto De Marchi, 18 Cherif Traore, 19 Marco Fuser, 20 Francesco Minto, 21 Edoardo Gori, 22 Tommaso Allan, 23 Luke McLean

Cardiff Blues: Willis Halaholo will make his Cardiff Blues debut as Danny Wilson makes eight changes for the trip to face Benetton Treviso.
 
The Super Rugby-winning centre arrived last month and has now enjoyed more than a full week of training with his new region. He partners former Hurricanes teammate Rey Lee-Lo in the centre, with Wales U20s star Rhun Williams also in line for his regional debut.
 
Wilson said: "He may take a little time to settle into the way we play, the structures and the rest of it, especially in the heat of the moment, but from an individual point of view he looks a class act.
 
"Most people who have watched him play will say his attacking strength is pretty obvious. He is powerful, he has good footwork and he played starting centre in the Hurriances side that have just won the Super Rugby title so he comes with good pedigree."
 
Six of the seven players release from Wales training go straight back into the starting line-up. In the back line, Williams on the wing and namesake Lloyd Williams in the number nine jersey.
 
Up front Rhys Gill and Scott Andrews pack down either side of captain Matthew Rees and Sam Warburton and Ellis Jenkins start on the flanks, with Kristian Dacey on the bench.
 
The Blues lost last season's corresponding fixture but have already won in Italy once in the current campaign and are determined to do so again following three consecutive Championship defeats.
 
Wilson added: "We have worked on having a bit more urgency on attack and defence, getting into our attacking shape a bit quicker than against the Scarlets and likewise into our defensive positions.
 
"Treviso are a very different proposition at home to what they are away, you only get a grip of that once you experience it. They are a tough side to beat at their place. We will go there with a group that will learn from being out there and that experience, but with a target to win the game.
 
"It's a big achievement when you go to those places and win. It was certainly a big achievement going to Zebre and winning. We go to Treviso and our aim is exactly the same. If you are going to be challenging for things and in the top six, those are the types of games you go and win.
 
"As we know many sides go to Treviso and slip up or find it very difficult.  We are not taking this lightly, we know it will be a great win if we can get it."
 
Cardiff Blues:15 Matthew Morgan, 14 Blaine Scully, 13 Rey Lee-Lo, 12 Willis Halaholo, 11 Rhun Williams, 10 Steve Shingler, 9 Lloyd Williams, 8 Macauley Cook, 7 Ellis Jenkins, 6 Sam Warburton, 5 Jarrad Hoeata, 4 George Earle, 3 Scott Andrews, 2 Matthew Rees (c), 1 Rhys Gill 
Replacements: 16 Kris Dacey, 17 Brad Thyer, 18 Dillon, Lewis, 19 James Down, 20 Seb Davies, 21 Tomos Williams, 22 Jarrod Evans, 23 Dan Fish

Date: Friday, 4 November
Venue: Stadio Monigo
Kick-off: 20:15 local (19:15 GMT)
Referee: Ian Davies (Wales)
Assistant Referees: Dewi Phillips (Wales), Andrea Piardi (Italy)
TMO: Brian MacNeice (Ireland)

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