THE Fiji Bati will face top flight rugby league debutants Italy in a one-off Test match on October 12 in Australia.
National assistant coach Jo Rabele told Times Sport the match against Italy, which would make its debut in the Rugby League World Cup (RLWC) next year, might be their only international fixture this year.
Rabele said the Test match against Azzuri was part of their preparation for the 2013 RLWC in England.
"We have managed to secure this one-off Test match against Italy which we will use to prepare the Fiji Bati team for the world cup," he said.
"We are also planning for a tour to Vanuatu but there is no confirmation on this yet."
Rabele said the national team would be selected following the Battle of the Bati tournament from October 2 to 6.
He said the selected players would march into camp in Australia on October 10 for the Test match.
Rabele said they were expecting four teams from Fiji and Australia to compete at the annual Battle of the Bati tournament.
Fiji Residents, Australian Fijians, Country Fijians and a team from Queensland are pencilled in for the battle. "But if the team from Queensland doesn't turn up then we will have a Fiji Residents under-20 team in the competition," Rabele said.
"Coach Rick Stone wants to give the U20 players a fair chance in the Fiji Bati team selection for the world cup."
Rabele said they would pick a national U20 team to play the curtain- raiser to the Fiji-Italy match from the Vodafone Cup competition.
Meanwhile, in the Vodafone Cup U16 grade semi-final held on Friday, Makoi Bulldogs defeated Topline Warriors 14-4 while Davuilevu Knights overcame Lami Steelers 16-8 in the U18 grade.