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Last Updated: Friday, 17 October, 2003, 08:36 GMT 09:36 UK
Kirwan targets League stars
Italy coach John Kirwan
Kirwan turned down a move to league in his playing days
Italy coach John Kirwan admits he is hoping to unearth a gem by targeting rugby league players of Italian extraction to play for the Azzurri.

England's Jason Robinson and Australia's Wendell Sailor and Mat Rogers have all made successful tranisitions in recent years.

Sydney Roosters' Anthony Minichello and David Campese's nephew Terry have caught Kirwan's eye.

"It would be stupid of me not to look at the talent down here," he said.

Campese plays stand-off for the Canberra Raiders and his performance in the NRL semi-final against the New Zealand Warriors impressed Kirwan.

"I saw him play in the semi-final the other day in the rugby league," he said. "He has a good boot on him like his uncle."

Kirwan has scouts searching for new talent, but does not expect the plan to bear fruit immediately.

"I'm not really concentrating on it. I know there are a few guys down here who are looking at guys for me, but I won't be talking to anyone," he told The Australian newspaper.

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