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Saturday, 7 December, 2002, 16:19 GMT
Neath crumble in Italy
Neath v Leicester
Neath's draw with Leicester is their only point so far
Amatori and Calvisano 38-29 Neath



Neath handed Amatori and Calvisano their first win in European competition with a shocking second-half performance at the tiny Centro Sportivo ground.

Even more disappointing for the Welsh All Blacks was the fact that this defeat ends any realistic hopes of making the quarter-finals.

Young Amatori outside-half Vincenzo Zullo bagged 18 points in a superb display of goal-kicking.

Full-back Massimo Ravazzolo showed the Neath defence a clean pair of heels in scoring two tries.

Match details
Calvisano (5) 38
Tries: Ravazzolo (2), Trecate, De Carli
Cons: Zullo (3)
Pens: Zullo (4)
Neath (22) 29
Tries: Storey, B Williams, Penalty try, R Phillips
Cons: Jarvis (3)
Pens: Jarvis
Att: 2,500
Prolific Neath points-scorer Lee Jarvis opened the scoring with a penalty goal.

But the visitors were rocked after 20 minutes when Ravazzolo scored to give Amatori a 5-3 lead which evoked memories of Neath's shock loss to Viadana last season.

English referee Dave Pearson then ruled that the Amatori defence illegally collapsed a scrum on their line and awarded a penalty try, converted by Jarvis.

Centre James Storey scored a 38th minute try, and from the next kick-off, a flowing move was finished off by hooker Barry Williams.

Jarvis missed the touchline conversion but Neath went into the break 22-5 ahead.

Nervous Neath

Zullo kicked two penalty goals early in the second half to narrow the gap, but a try to veteran back-row Rowland Phillips, the captain for the day, restored Neath's healthy lead.

Italian international hooker Giampiero De Carli gave a crowd of 2,500 plenty to cheer about with a stunning try after 50 minutes.

With Zullo potting goals from all over the park, the All Blacks began to get nervous.

And worse was to come when full-back Ravazzolo produced a delightful chip and chase to score.

Zullo's conversion narrowed the margin to a solitary point with 10 minutes left on the clock.

The 21-year-old then coolly slotted a penalty goal to give his side the lead and an interception try from scrum-half Eugenio Trecate in the last minute confirmed the stunning upset.


Amatori and Calvisano: M Ravazzolo, F Merli, P Vaccari, S Varrella, A Vodo, V Zullo, E Trecate, G Bocca, G De Carli, D Davo, W Boardman, L Mastrodomenico, A De Rossi, F Mandelli, C Roux.
Reps: S Perugini, A Moretti, J Purll, F Letinic, P Griffen, G Raineri, E Muliero.

Neath: A Durston; G Morris, A Bateman, J Storey, S Williams; L Jarvis, A Moore; P James, B Williams, A Millward, A Newman, L Bateman, A Mocelutu, B Sinkinson, R Phillips (capt).
Reps: S Connor, S Jones, A Jones, D Jones, S Martin, D Tiueti, S Tandy.

Ref: Dave Pearson (England).


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