Italy 14-25 France: France hold on as hosts rue missed chances
|Six Nations: Italy v France|
|Italy (6) 14|
|Try: Tebaldi Pens: Allan 3|
|France (10) 25|
|Tries: Dupont, Huget, Penaud Pen: Ntamack Cons: Ntamack 2 Drop-goal: Ntamack|
Italy agonisingly missed out on a rare Six Nations win as France ended their disappointing campaign with victory.
Antoine Dupont and Yoann Huget scored to give France control but Italy had enough chances in Rome to end their 21-game winless run in the championship.
Tito Tebaldi scored in the 54th minute and, when a converted try would have put Italy in front late on, Marco Zanon lost the ball when over the tryline.
Damian Penaud then sealed France's win by going over in the 78th minute.
It was Penaud who had moments earlier denied Zanon with a brilliant last-ditch tackle at the end of a period of sustained Italian pressure in the final 10 minutes, with France playing with 14 men because of Camille Chat's yellow card.
Italy had also missed chances in the first half with Zanon again being denied a try on debut.
He looked certain to score after running onto a clever kick through but the ball hit a post and deflected away from him.
The play was then taken back for an earlier penalty but Italy knocked the ball on within yards of the tryline in their next attack.
France offered little going forward for the majority of the game but the win does at least see them end the campaign, which has included defeats by Wales, England and Ireland, with a second win.
It sees them move above Scotland into fourth in the table while Italy will finish bottom.
Scotland can move back above France by beating England at Twickenham at 17:00 GMT.
Italy: Hayward, Padovani, Zanon, Morisi, Esposito, Allan, Tebaldi, Lovotti, Ghiraldini, Pasquali, Sisi, Ruzza, Steyn, Polledri, Parisse.
Replacements: Traore for Lovotti (67), Ferrari for Pasquali (45), Zanni for Sisi (59), Negri for Steyn (63), Sperandio for Esposito (67).
France: Medard, Penaud, Bastareaud, Fofana, Huget, Ntamack, Dupont, Falgoux, Guirado, Bamba, Lambey, Willemse, Alldritt, Camara, Picamoles.
Replacements: Chat for Guirado (18), Priso for Falgoux (64), Aldegheri for Camara (74), Gabrillagues for Willemse (59), Iturria for Alldritt (59), Serin for Dupont (55), Lopez, for Ntamack (79), Ramos for Huget (68).