Italy overwhelms Spain and flies to the World Cup in New Zealand!

Domination 34-10: two goals from Duca, goals from Gai and Madia plus a technical goal. Blue first thanks to the simultaneous result of Ireland-Scotland (18-20), which guarantees the first place

Italy is at the World Cup! The last day of the qualifying tournament in Parma gave Andrea Di Giandomenico the ticket to next year’s World Cup in New Zealand. A milestone built in the last four years, based on the group that had already played in Ireland in 2017 with the inclusion of a new generation of girls. The victory with bonus (34-10) obtained against Spain was decisive, even if Sara Barattin and teammates had to wait for the final whistle of a very tight Scotland-Ireland to really celebrate. An Irish victory with an offensive bonus would have qualified the greens by virtue of the victory in the direct clash with Italy. Instead the usual Scottish heart has overturned all predictions and in the 80 ‘the goal of Rollie transformed by Law gave the girls of the Cardo the 20-18 victory. In New Zealand the Azzurre will be included in group B with the USA, Canada and the winner of the Asian qualifying tournament (Japan on paper). Scotland, second, will instead go to play for the last chances in the final quadrangular against Samoa, Colombia and the second of the Asian tournament. The Italian victory against Spain brought the signing of a brace from Giordana Duca and the goals of Lucia Gai and Veronica Madia (plus a technical goal).

First half without history

From the first ball of the match the blues pitched the curtains in the Spanish half of the pitch, even if they had to wait fifteen minutes to break the deadlock with the maul organized by a 5-meter touch-off that brought Lucia Gai to the goal. In reality, a throw-in was more of a cross than a delight for both teams (4 throw-ins lost each at the end of the first half), but Italy’s second lines made themselves felt with the oval in hand. It was in fact a percussion by Giordana Duca in the 17 ‘to pave the way for the second goal, aimed at a delicious soccer by Sara Barattin to jump over the defense picked up on the fly and then crushed to the ground by Michela Sillari. Italy continued to build, but between the errors in the lineout and a very tight Spanish defense present on the meeting points, only 3 more points arrived with a place still by Sillari. Spain replied to the Italian punishment with the kick of Garcia Rodriguez (34 ‘) to reward the first visit of the Iberians in Italy’s 22 for the 15-3 at half-time.

The recovery

Back on the pitch it was the Spaniards who took control of the game. The indiscipline did not help the Azzurre to ease the pressure and the Iberians reopened the game in the 55th minute with the excellent running line of Ardugo Llobregat for the goal under the posts transformed by Garcia Rodriguez. It takes tactical foot play to get back on the pitch and bring pressure. The plan works in the 62nd minute because from a blue throw-in somehow recovered by Gai, Sgorbini sinks into the Spanish defensive line and then Duca thinks again to push on his legs and go to crush. Sillari’s transformation brings Italy back to +12. An important goal for the score, but also to bring the inertia of the match back to the blue side. From that moment, in fact, thanks also to the immense work of the first 5 girls of the package, Italy resumed the thread of the game and at 76 ‘put the seal on the 5 points in the standings with the goal of Veronica Madia, and then round off further in the finish with a technical meta.

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Italy overwhelms Spain and flies to the World Cup in New Zealand!

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