Press Release, 27/6/12

In round three, the Spartans Catania battled Gladiators for their r-Evolution League’s Southern Group match played in the Italian capital on June 16.

At “Tre Fontane di Roma”, the Sicilians had a tough trip via the motorway to reach the capital with a tough showdown expected against, the Italian Champions, Gladiators Roma!A win for either franchise would propel their team’s chances going into the finals, while those who lost still have assurance of collecting second place in the group and facing a more difficult semi-final berth.

The Spartans in their third season of the national rugby league championship managed by the FIRFL again have a predominantly younger team than all other counterparts with players from all over Sicily, including Cus Catania, Misterbianco, Briganti Librino, Catania Rugby, Palermo R.C., Amatori Catania, Acireale Rugby and San Gregorio Catania, as well as the winner of the ‘Coppa Italia di Rugby XIII’ – Rectores Belpasso.

Officiated by referee Roberto D’amico, the Spartans were unprepared for an explosive Gladiators side that in the first few minutes produced a try. However, after a short time the Spartans had a quick change of face demonstrating fast play and strong tackles that propelling them to a two try lead after thirty minutes, but the dangers were just around the corner, with the first half that ending in a draw, and the Sicilians who exhausted the few players spared from the hard journey. The second half condemned the Spartans in scoring with only one defeat, in part because of the exhaustion of all four changes through injury, but with a reaction which fully testifies to the pride of Sicily. The final score being 42 to 28 for the Gladiators Roma, with the Spartans coming off the field to an applause from all the Roman spectators. But for the Spartans President Massimo Nicotra it is not ciao to the final just yet.

The Northerm group in their round 2 clash had to face an unfortunate abandoned match by Nova Gorena Padova due to lost player commitments (Beach and Touch Rugby)!

WEEK 4 – r-Evolution League (Northern Group Round 3)

In the third round of r-Evolution League in the North, Rex Albinea managed to win the classification battle for the second consecutive year by beating the Magnifici Firenze on the last group day at ‘campi della Canalina’ in Reggio Emilia.

The team managed by Marco Parrello was able to show some force in the early stages of the match, creating difficulties for the Florentines.

After only 2 minutes, Matteo Russotto crossed the opposition try line for the first time. Another 17 minutes passed, the same move can brought in another try for the Rex. with John de Pascali, a protagonist from last year’s final against the Gladiators, converting both tries driving up the score to 12 nil after 19 minutes.

The reaction of the Magnifici with their Captain / Coach Luigi Ferraro, still on the sideline for muscular problems respond by bringing pressure on the Reggio Emilia defensive line. However, the Rex defensive line was able to hold and the Magnifici offensive plays left their Tuscan line unmanned with the Rex effectively breaking the line twice with tries at 25′ by Da Silva Maicon (de Pascali converts) and at 34′ with Zonta Riccardo.

At the close of the first half, Firenze finally managed to find the try line with Moncada scoring, improving the score to 22 to 4 at the break.

The second half opened in a dramatically opposite fashion with the Magnifici seemingly finding the key to a comeback: building their attack with a more dynamic structure in a more and their defense exhausting the Reggio Emilian side with Matteini scoring at 46′ and 55′ through De Castro (converted by Matteini).

With still 25 minutes to play the result was now at 22-14 with Magnifici finding more courage and hope in their new enterprising game, but Albinea were able to core and convert through de Pascali at the 60 minute mark. Another four minutes later, Magnifici went on the charge through their strike player Marco Matteini.

The last 15 minutes, however, was a telling passage for Rex Albinea. Only letting in one try for the Florentines at 36 minutes to De Castro, but an astounding four additional tries well distributed with De Pascali, Poli, Coal and Cristoni from Rex Albinea, from 70 minutes at the conclusive stage! The final sprint by Rex put an end to the game and crushed any Florentine ambition to bring the match back in their favour. The final score being 54-26, earning Rex Albinea top spot in the Northern Group.

The Semi Finals day is now set for June 30 at “Tre Fontane” in Roma between Spartans Catania and the Northern Group winner, Reggio Emilia’s Rex Albinea. Magnifici Firenze will now face the Italian Champions and former foes Gladiators Roma who will look to again defend their crown, while Spartans will look to shock the 2011 runners up, Rex Albinea.

FINAL r-Evolution League Points Classification Rankings

The Northern Group
1. Rex 04
2. Magnifici 02
3. Gorena 00

The Southern Group
1. Gladiators 04
2. Spartans 02
3. Ceccano 00

Press Release: Federazione Italia Rugby Football League