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John is Named Club Captain
The Cornish Pirates are delighted to announce that backrower John Stevens will be the club captain for the 2022/23 season.
A product of the club’s youth section, the now 27-year-old was last season’s vice-captain who has to date made 95 appearances for the Cornish Pirates.
Speaking reference John’s appointment, joint head coach Alan Paver said:
“As we have all seen, John is a proud Cornishman who has stayed the course and evolved into both a fine player and a fine young man.
“He is also someone who leads by example, says what he thinks, and though not someone to say a lot does express exactly what is on his mind to the players and coaches, including having a strong view as to how the game should be played.
“John also holds all the values we adhere to, day in and day out. A hard player, he is extremely hardworking, skilful and honest, so for us to have someone with such attributes as club captain is great, and his appointment is a richly deserved.”
John has also commented on his appointment, saying:
“It is a tremendous honour to be appointed as club captain and hoping to string a good number of games together, and to keep fit, I am looking forward to the season and challenges that lie in wait.
“I have led the side on a few occasions, so have some experience, and will now be looking to put my own stamp on my appointment and strive hard to lead a winning team.
“There may have been some concern, and it was certainly sad to see several stalwart performers and friends leave at the end of last season. However, everything has its transition, and we have to move on with a best foot forward. Our coaches have recruited well and from what we have seen there is every prospect of an exciting campaign ahead.”
John Stevens – Profile
DoB 15th Dec 1994
Height 6′ 1” (1.85m)
Weight 16st 3lbs (103kg)
Honours Cornwall U15s-U18s
It was confirmed early in August 2013, that back-rower John had signed for the Cornish Pirates. The youngest son of former Pirate ‘Stack’ Stevens, he is a product of the club’s youth section.
Educated at Bolitho School and then Truro School, John is a past recipient of the ‘Mischler Memorial Cup’, awarded for his contribution when he played for the Cornwall Schools under 18s side. John’s success delighted the then Chairman and President of the Old Truronians Association, the late Roger Harris, as the former Cornwall hooker played many games for the county alongside John’s father.
John’s older brother Sam (who has played for Cornwall and captained Redruth) also came up through the Pirates youth section, and we must not forget that their grandfather Geoff Vingoe starred for Penzance & Newlyn RFC in his day and was a fine ‘sevens’ player.
After four seasons with the Pirates, during which John also enjoyed regular match action playing for Redruth, he was frustratingly injured for much of the 2017/18 campaign. However, when back to full fitness he really made his mark and was selected as a regular starter in a Cornish Pirates shirt. He was also presented with the club’s ‘Most Improved Player’ award.
Skilful and as tough as they come, John continued to impress, although there was frustration when, after being named vice-captain for the 2021/22 season, injury restricted him to making just 10 appearances, which took his overall tally to 95.