Star full-back Matteo Minozzi has ruled himself out of the tournament and has not been selected for the squad.
The Wasps man, who has scored 11 tried in 22 games for his country, said he is too “physically and mentally tired” to live in a bubble for another two months.
Jake Polledri is another notable absentee for the Azzurri, he is injured. Centre Juan Ignacio Brex will be making his debut today, too.
Italy starting XV: J Trulla; L Sperandio, M Zanon, J Ignacio Brex, M Ioane; P Garbisi, S Varney; C Traore, L Bigi (c), M Riccioni; M Lazzaroni, D Sisi; S Negri, J Meyer, M Lamaro.
Replacements: G Lucchesi, D Fischetti, G Zilocchi, N Cannone, F Ruzza, M Mbanda, G Palazzani, C Canna.
France suffered a major blow with news that centre Virimi Vakatawa will miss the entire Six Nations campaign with a knee injury.
However, there is good news for No 8 Grégory Alldritt, who has returned to full training and is available for this game. Alldritt has missed most of France’s preparation after undergoing an arthroscopy on his knee.
Fly-half Romain Ntamack, who was nominated for player of the tournament last year, will miss this match after suffering a fractured jaw in December.
France starting XV: B Dulin; T Thomas, A Vincent, G Fickou, G Villiere; M Jalibert, A Dupont; C Baille, J Marchand, M Haouas, B Le Roux; P Willemse, D Cretin; C Ollivon (c), G Alldritt.
Replacements: P Bourgarit, J-B Gros, D Aldeghiri, R Taofifenua, A Jeronch, B Serin, L Carbonel, D Penaud.
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