Palmer hails Parisse
England lock Tom Palmer insists leading Italy brings out the best in Sergio Parisse.
Last Updated: 07/02/12 7:45am
England lock Tom Palmer insists leading Italy brings out the best in Stade Francais team-mate Sergio Parisse.
England will face the Azzurri in Rome on Saturday for the second round of an RBS Six Nations campaign that opened with a 13-6 victory over Scotland at Murrayfield.
Spearheading Italy's assault at the Stadio Olimpico will be Parisse, their talismanic skipper who Palmer believes grows in stature every time he steps into the Test arena.
"Sergio Parisse is a high-quality player," he said.
"He's a very good athlete, very powerful and combines that with being very skilful.
"He has a high work-rate, so he has everything you need to be a top player.
"It seems as though he raises his game every time he plays for Italy.
"He often plays well for Stade, but not quite as consistently well as he does for Italy.
"He's the captain, it's a big responsibility for him and he rises to the challenge. He delivers every time he plays for them."
England will name their 22 to face Italy on Thursday morning.