A week in Rome with no laptop means I ‘m writing this after round 2 of the 2018 6 Nations tournament.  As usual I have photos to share and a few thoughts on the game. (lots more photos to follow when WordPress starts working properly again)

This was my second visit to Rome to watch the match, this time it was for a week, it really is a remarkable city with so much to see, well worth spending more than a few days.

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It’s relatively east to get hold of tickets for the 6 Nations in Rome, ticketone.it is the website to use to get to the Studio Olimpico.  As far as physically getting there, the easier route is to catch the Metro to Flaminio then jump on a tram.  It is however possible to walk along the river if you have time.

It’s worth arriving early to have a look around the complex, paying particular attention to the running track with it’s impressive statues.

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I was with my friend Maria, we paid £70 for our seats which were virtually on the half way line in the higher tier.  Leg room was at a premium, I imagine there were many very uncomfortable tall people, I’m vertically challenged and I felt rather squashed!

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But, the view was a good one, which was the main thing.  I confess to being a big Sergio Parisse fan and have been at the last 4 matches between these 2 sides, watching the great man carry his side.  I also saw him finally life a trophy with his team Stade Francais after they won the Top 14 Final against Clermont Auvergne in 2015.  He’s a man who’s totally deserved success, the emotion he showed when the final whistle went was very touching.

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This Italian performance was one of the best I’ve seen, Parisse remains  a world class player but he had some good company this time round and Italy scored 2 tries, with Benvenuti and Bellini getting their names on the score sheet, they also had one disallowed for a blatant forward pass.  England looked vulnerable in defence 3 times and the home team took advantage 3 times.

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As far as England were concerned the Ford/Farrell partnership was the best I’ve seen; their handling was at times brilliant.  The move to put Anthony Watson in for the first of his 2 tries was a sight to behold.  Ben T’eo made the space for the 10/12 duo to do their thing.

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Sam Simmonds on his 6 Nations debut scored 2 tries, was second only to Watson with 75 metres run, he topped the tackle count for England by some way with 22 made and none missed.  He was impressive to say the least and should have been in contention for the man of the match accolade.

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England were great in attack but slightly leaky in defence, but will have been satisfied with a scoreline of Italy 15 England 46.

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We walked back to the station after the match to bring a total of 7.5 miles for the day and aching knees for the night.

 

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