Mauro Bergamasco (born 1 May 1979) is a former Italian rugby union footballer who last played for Zebre. He predominantly played as an open-side flanker, although his versatility means that he had also played a number of international games on the wing, and started at scrum-half in an infamously error-prone performance. He was considered to be one of Italy's best players in his preferred position.
Mauro Bergamasco playing for Stade Français
|Birth name||Mauro Bergamasco|
|Date of birth||1 May 1979|
|Place of birth||Padova, Italy|
|Height||1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)|
|Weight||98 kg (15 st 6 lb)|
|Notable relative(s)||Arturo Bergamasco (father)|
Mirco Bergamasco (brother)
|Occupation(s)||Professional rugby union footballer|
|Rugby union career|
Mauro Bergamasco was born in Padua into a rugby family; his father Arturo gained four caps for the Italian national side between 1973 and 1978, whilst his brother, Mirco, has also won caps for the Italian national team. Bergamasco cites his father as the main reason for his interest in rugby: as a young boy, he would accompany his father to the training sessions of rugby club Selvazzano, the team Arturo coached.
In 2003, he moved to France with his younger brother to play for Stade Français, reportedly negotiating a contract for his brother Mirco without telling him. The brothers went on to win two French championships.
Mauro joined RaboDirect Pro12 side, Aironi Rugby on 5 December 2011.
He made his international debut at the age of 19 against the Netherlands and soon became a key member of the Italian squad.
In 2003, Italy's coach John Kirwan deployed him as a winger, comparing his speed and physical stature with Jonah Lomu. Bergamasco continued to insist that his best position was on the flank, and later re-established himself in that position.
Bergamasco was banned for four weeks in 2007 for hitting Wales fly half Stephen Jones in a Six Nations match and again for 13 weeks after gouging the eyes of Lee Byrne in the corresponding fixture the following year.
For the 2009 Six Nations match against England, he was chosen to play at scrum-half thanks to three alternatives being injured, but was substituted at half time after a shocking performance, regarded as one of the worst by a player in international rugby, in which his mistakes directly led to three England tries. He was returned to his normal starting position at flanker for the following week's fixture against Ireland.
He missed the 2011 Six Nations Championship due to an injury, but was called for the 2011 Churchill Cup to the experienced Italy A, as a preparation for the upcoming 2011 Rugby World Cup. Italy A would finish in 3rd place.
Although not in the original Italian squad for the 2013 Six Nations Championship, he was called up by coach Jacques Brunel after Sergio Parisse was sent-off, facing the possibility of at least a six-week ban for insulting a match official during a club game mid-6 Nations Championship.
For the 2015 Rugby World Cup, he became the second player in history to have played five World Cups, reaching the Samoan Brian Lima. He announced his retirement from professional rugby after Italy's final game of the tournament.
- "Rawr Data Player Profile: Mauro and Mirco Bergamasco". Retrieved 31 March 2011.
- rbs6nations, Italian 'Lomu' wings in, 13 Feb 2003
- "Italy leave a Bergamasco brother on the bench". The Scotsman. 22 August 2003. Retrieved 31 March 2011.
-  Bergamasco handed scrum-half role
- Standley, James (7 February 2009). "England 36–11 Italy". BBC News Sport. Retrieved 15 February 2009.
- "Bergamasco moved back to flanker". BBC News Sport. 12 February 2009. Retrieved 15 December 2009.
- Mauro Bergamasco Called for the 2011 Churchill Cup
- "Six Nations 2013: Sergio Parisse set to miss Wales match". BBC News Sport. 18 February 2013. Retrieved 18 February 2013.
- Roberto Parretta (26 September 2015). "Rugby, Coppa del Mondo: Bergamasco entrata record, 5 Mondiali come Lima". Gazzetta dello Sport. Retrieved 12 October 2015.
- rugbybworldcup.com. "Mauro Bergamasco ends playing career with appeal to Italian authorities". Retrieved 9 November 2017.