Rugby

Rugby

Wallabies after own Renaissance
Thursday 18, Nov 2010

The Wallabies have flown into the magnificent Renaissance city of Florence to prepare for this weekend's Test against Italy. Australia will play its ever first Test match in the Tuscan city at soccer club Fiorentina's home ground, the 47,000-capacity Stadio Artemio Franchi, on Sunday morning (AEDT). The Wallabies have left the wind, rain and cold of the United Kingdom and Ireland behind for conditions which should be more conducive to their expansive game. They will also be looking to expand their minds in the narrow, cobble-stoned streets, which are home to some of the world's great art galleries containing works by the likes of Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo. "It's a shame we're only having three or four days here," prop Ben Alexander said. "We would love to have a look around. "I've been to Italy a few times but have never been to Florence, the Duomo (cathedral) and all the Renaissance stuff." Coach Robbie Deans is looking for his own Renaissance after two straight losses to England and Munster. Deans, who signalled all spots were up for grabs following last weekend's crushing Test loss at Twickenham, will name his team at midnight (AEDT). Italy names its side earlier in the day, minus injured former NRL star Craig Gower. Alexander, a Penrith Panthers supporter, said the Australians were disappointed the former Kangaroo will not be there. "That 2003 grand final (when Penrith beat the Sydney Roosters), I remember where I was when I was watching that," he said. "It will be disappointing if Craig's out."

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