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Italy v Australia preview

Australia playmaker Berrick Barnes has labelled this weekend's trip to Italy as a "danger game" following the high of their Twickenham success.

The Wallabies defied the odds to snatch a memorable 20-14 win at English headquarters last weekend and silence the critics who had been sharpening their knives.

Coach Robbie Deans and his side came in for much criticism following a terrible 33-6 defeat to open their European tour against France, during which their scrum melted under the home pressure.

There was no sign of such problems against England last weekend and, while that provided a much-needed boost, Barnes has warned the set-piece will again be severely tested by a physical Italian outfit in Florence.

"It is the danger game. There's no hiding from it either," Barnes told reporters.

"We've prepared as well as can - it's about having that same mindset we had last week and going out there and doing it all again.

"A big indication of how we'll go is how our set piece goes from the outset. Their game is based around that."

Australia have never lost to Italy in 14 meetings with their last success a comfortable 32-6 triumph during last year's World Cup.

Australia have, however, slipped up against lesser opposition in the recent past - twice losing to Scotland as well as Samoa last year - and the Azzurri tested New Zealand for long periods last week before a late surge saw them fall 42-10.

"I've played them four or five times and they're always tough grinds. You never get away with an easy game against these blokes - no way in the world," Barnes said.

"You find if you don't get your set piece right, it makes for a very hard game. The ball gets scrappy, they kick penalties and keep themselves in games."

Italy coach Jacques Brunel has made two changes from the team that lost to the All Blacks in Rome with Robert Barbieri returning to the openside while Quintin Geldenhuys slots into the second row.

"The return of Barbieri and Geldenhuys in the second row is designed to add more power to the team from the start," Brunel said.

Australia scrum-half Brett Sheehan will make his first start six years after his debut in place of the rested Nick Phipps.

That is one of four changes for the Wallabies as Deans looks to keep his side fresh for Wales next week.

Digby Ioane is also given the week off, replaced by Drew Mitchell, while Scott Higginbotham makes his first start of the tour after completing a ban. Stephen Moore has also been drafted in at hooker ahead of Tatafu Polota-Nau.