Sergio Parisse

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Sergio Parisse
Geneva Rugby Cup - 20140808 - SF vs LOU - Sergio Parisse 1.jpg
Full name Sergio Matteo Parisse
Date of birth (1983-09-12) 12 September 1983 (age 33)
Place of birth La Plata, Argentina
Height 1.96 m (6 ft 5 in)
Weight 112 kg (17 st 9 lb)[1]
Rugby union career
Playing career
Position Number Eight, Flanker
Professional / senior clubs
Years Club / team Caps (points)
Stade Français
correct as of 28 August 2015.
National team(s)
Years Club / team Caps (points)
2002– Italy 119 (73)
correct as of 19 March 2016.

Sergio Parisse (Italian pronunciation: [ˈsɛrdʒo paˈrisse]; born 12 September 1983) is an Italian rugby union player. He was the first Italian rugby union player to be nominated for the IRB International Player of the Year. He has captained French team Stade Français and is current captain of the Italy national rugby union team. Parisse is widely considered one of the greatest number eights of modern rugby.

Early life[edit]

Parisse was born in La Plata, Argentina, to Italian parents. His father, also Sergio, played for L'Aquila where he won the Italian Club Championships in 1967 before his job with Alitalia took him to Argentina in 1970. Sergio Junior was born in 1983 and played his early rugby for La Plata. His family spoke Italian at home and every year Sergio would go on holiday to Italy.

Club career[edit]

Sergio Parisse jumps to catch an up and under during a warm up session in Toulouse

Parisse moved to Italy and joined Treviso where he played for four years. He joined his Italian team mates Mauro Bergamasco and Mirco Bergamasco at French giants Stade Français in 2005.

International career[edit]

A number 8 of great handling ability, Parisse's positional sense in the lineout and flair for getting across the gainline has marked him out as a special player in an often struggling Italian team.[citation needed]

He was capped at the age of just 18 by then Italy coach John Kirwan, in a 64–10 defeat against New Zealand in Hamilton, New Zealand in June 2002. Parisse scored his first Test try against Canada in the 2003 Rugby World Cup.

Though Italy failed to make it beyond the pool stage of the 2007 Rugby World Cup, Parisse played well.

Parisse continued his form into the 2008 Six Nations Championship. Parisse won his 50th cap for Italy against England in the 2008 Six Nations Championship at the age of 24. Parisse is also the Italian captain, appointed in 2008 by Nick Mallett in place of Marco Bortolami. In September 2008 Parisse was nominated for IRB International Player of the Year[2] alongside Dan Carter, Ryan Jones, Shane Williams and Mike Blair.

Parisse missed most of the 2009–10 Top 14 season with a serious knee injury that ruled him out of the 2010 Six Nations Championship.[3]

Parisse captained Italy in the 2011 Rugby World Cup in New Zealand. Italy finished third in their group, one place short of qualification, after two losses against Australia[4] and Ireland on top of their two wins against USA and Russia.[5] Parisse scored a total of two tries at the tournament.

He captained Italy in the 2012 Six Nations Championship.[6] Italy had a mixed championship with losses against France, Wales, England and Ireland but also victory against Scotland to avoid the wooden spoon.[7] Parisse again captained Italy for the 2013 Six Nations Championship.The campaign started very well for the Italians when they beat France for only the second time ever, with Parisse himself scoring a try.[8] The following week Italy lost 33-10 to Scotland in an underwhelming performance at Murrayfield.[9] Parisse missed Italy's match with Wales on the 23 February 2013 due to abusing a referee in a club game with Stade Francais.[10] Italy struggled without their captain and lost 26-9.[11] Parisse returned for Italy's next game against England and despite England being massive favourites Italy put in a competitive display to only lose by seven points, 18-11.[12]

In the last week of the championship Italy beat Ireland for the first time ever in a competitive match on a margin of 22 - 15[13] making it one of Italy's most successful Six Nations ever.[14]

Style of play[edit]

Parisse is known for having many qualities, most notably his famous passing skills. Parisse is rare in ability to pass accurately without looking. This was highlighted by Parisse's behind-his-back pass against New Zealand.[15][16] Other passing skills he possesses include quick offloads and passing the ball under his legs, which he has done on many occasions including against France and South Africa.[17][18]

Sergio also regularly uses dummying, cut and switch and pop-passing. Other qualities include; a good catcher of the high ball, powerful ball-carrier, good receiver line-out option and impressive footwork.[19]


Personal life[edit]

He is a keen skier, but has done it less often after teammate Sylvain Marconnet broke his leg skiing in 2007.

Parisse married Miss France 2006 and Miss Europe 2006 Alexandra Rosenfeld in early 2010. They had met in 2007 after Rosenfeld was invited to watch a Stade Français game and was then invited to the players' table. They got married in Hérault where Rosenfeld is from.[20] The couple's first child, a daughter named Ava, was born on 23 August 2010 in Béziers. Rosenfeld and Parisse divorced in April 2013. Parisse has appeared on Dieux du Stade on numerous occasions.[21]


External links[edit]