Mirco Bergamasco felt Italy finally answered their critics in the best possible way with Saturday's historic triumph over France in the Six Nations.
Bergamasco kicked 17 points to fire the Azzurri to a come-from-behind 22-21 victory in Rome.
"We didn't like certain comments made by the French press, who have in recent years questioned our right to compete in the Six Nations," he said. "We definitely deserve to be in this tournament."
Bergamasco showed nerves of steel as he slotted two crucial penalties to win it for Italy.
"I was shaking after I missed my second penalty attempt," Bergamasco said. "But then I told myself I would not miss any more kicks. That was the case."
Bergamasco and co had reason to be ecstatic as Italy had failed in their previous 11 attempts to beat Les Bleus in the tournament. The win was also the Azzurri's first of the year.
Italy now take on Scotland at Murrayfield on Saturday hoping to finish the Six Nations in style.
"We have to postpone our celebrations and focus on our game against Scotland," Bergamasco said. "It's going to be a different match with respect to the game against France.
"We have to keep up the same determination and try to repeat the performance."