Italy have been handed a boost after Brendan Venter signed a contract to continue as their defence coach until the 2019 Rugby World Cup.
Venter, who worked with the Azzurri during their November Tests last year, will combine his duties with being a doctor in South Africa.
“I played and worked with Brendan at London Irish in the past and I believe that this agreement is the best it can be, for us and for him,” said Italy head coach Conor O’Shea, who is clearly pleased to have him on board.
“Brendan has had a great impact on the group.
“We are excited to be working with him for years to come. He’s a coach respected by the whole international rugby scene and we are proud that he wants to join our project with Italy until the next Rugby World Cup.”