Six Nations 2024: Louis Lynagh supplies on the spot influence as Italy ship in opposition to Scotland

Louis Lynagh’s try-scoring Check debut in Italy’s uncommon Six Nations residence win over Scotland marked the tip of an emotional 4 weeks for the wing, however maybe the beginning of one thing extra poignant for a nation.

Wouldn’t it be England, Italy or Australia?

That was the query surrounding Lynagh – born in Treviso, nurtured in London and son of Wallaby legend Michael – since his breakthrough season at Harlequins when he starred of their Premiership remaining success in 2021.

Though known as as much as an England coaching camp later in 2021, he was not capped and in February this yr the 23-year-old signalled the beginning of a brand new chapter by saying his departure from Quins.

Lynagh picked Benetton in his mom’s native Italy, the place his father Michael performed from 1991-1996.

Two days after his announcement the winger was named within the Italy squad, and some weeks after that the Azzurri received their first residence recreation since beating Eire in 2013.

“He has had an enormous few weeks,” former England wing Chris Ashton informed Six Nations Rugby Particular. “For him to get his first cap, rating a try to be on the tip of a win like that in opposition to Scotland in Rome is an efficient week.”

The flying winger raced on to Paolo Garbisi’s grubber kick to attain a second-half strive earlier than throwing the ball into the stands to sign his arrival on the worldwide stage.

The strive despatched the packed Stadio Olimpico wild because it introduced Italy inside putting distance of a primary win in 14 video games in opposition to Scotland.

An emotional Lynagh waved to his fatherexternal-link as he was coming down the Olimpico steps to fulfill him post-game, along with his mum beaming from ear to ear.

“I’m taking a look at them now, dad is nearly in tears,” Lynagh informed ITV Sport after the sport.

“I haven’t got any phrases proper now – one try to one win, I would retire.

“It is an incredible factor now we have been working in direction of all week. There was one thing within the air and I felt like we might win.”

‘Italy are going to get higher’

Not one of the class of 2013 stay within the squad and this can be a new period for Italian rugby beneath the stewardship of head coach Gonzalo Quesada.

The Argentine took over from Kieran Crowley after Italy’s dismal World Cup marketing campaign, wherein they crashed out within the group stage after delivery 96 factors to New Zealand and 60 in opposition to France.

Italy conceded 22 tries in final yr’s Six Nations and their place within the championship was once more known as into query.

However they’ve solely leaked 13 after 5 video games this time period as Quesada has tightened the defence whereas persevering with to advertise attacking rugby.

Garbisi’s injury-time penalty hit the publish to disclaim Italy a primary Six Nations victory in France in spherical three – in any other case the Azzurri can be fourth within the desk and eyeing three successive wins.

Lynagh, in the meantime, shall be a part of Benetton’s thrilling younger backline subsequent season which incorporates 21-year-old Tommaso Menoncello, one of many Azzurri’s standout gamers this marketing campaign.

This season, Benetton are two factors off the highest 4 locations within the United Rugby Championship (URC) and proving a problem for each aspect.

Former Scotland captain John Barclay says Benetton’s improvement displays the progress of Italian rugby.

“You take a look at what Benetton are doing within the URC and actually climbing up there, and also you take a look at the standard they’ve and the fashion they’re attempting to play, and you’ll see their potential,” Barclay informed BBC’s Rugby Union Every day.

Success this yr has not simply been restricted to the senior aspect.

After ending third and fourth prior to now two campaigns, Italy Beneath-20s proceed to thrive in opposition to the northern hemisphere heavyweights with wins over France and Scotland on this yr’s match.

“You take a look at the under-20s coming by means of having crushed France,” Barclay added.

“They’ve a extremely sturdy group and that’s the concern for Wales and Scotland.

“Italy are going to get higher and proceed to get higher as a result of they’ve a depth of younger expertise coming by means of, which I do not suppose Scotland or Wales have coming by means of from the under-20s.”

Quantity eight Ross Vintcent is one other 21-year-old with a excessive ceiling in blue. The Exeter again row equipped a barnstorming late run to arrange Stephen Varney’s match-winning rating.

Nonetheless technically employed as a Domino’s supply driver,external-link the South African native wished to be a part of the thrilling Italian undertaking.

Italy’s youthful squad now journey to Cardiff trying to stay undefeated for 3 video games in a row for the primary time of their Six Nations historical past.

The beginning of a golden period? Solely time will inform.

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