Home boy will develop talent
Stevenage Town have appointed homegrown talent Gareth Lewis as their full-time rugby youth development officer. The 21-year-old will spend his time developing the game in all Stevenage primary and secondary schools as well as the club. Funding was provide
Stevenage Town have appointed homegrown talent Gareth Lewis as their full-time rugby youth development officer.
The 21-year-old will spend his time developing the game in all Stevenage primary and secondary schools as well as the club.
Funding was provided by newly formed company The Rugby Zone and the government Sportsmatch scheme along with funds generated by the rugby club itself.
Lewis plays centre, fly-half or full-back for the Stags and made his debut against Welwyn last year.
He said: "After coming home from university, I had been searching for a job that I could enjoy and find fulfilling, so when this opportunity came up I knew that this was the perfect job for me.
"I've been coaching for about four years having gained my level one RFU coaching award when I was 17.
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"I really enjoy the interaction with players of all ages and the best part is watching them progress and develop.
"My aims for this job will be to increase participation in the schools, improve the level of coaching each player receives and improve the standard and number of fixtures.
"I believe that for players to improve they must play more frequently and against better opposition.
"This is why I intend to introduce a pilot schools league in Stevenage with the aim of introducing it fully next season to all age groups at secondary school level.
"I will also aim for an under-14s and under-17s girls' side to run from Stevenage Town. This was started last season but interest needs rejuvenating."
Lewis was part of the minis/youth set-up at both Bacavians and Stevenage Town, as well as playing for his school, Thomas Alleyne.
He continued: "After returning to Stevenage after a number of years away, I quickly got back into the swing of things and ended last season as top points scorer and joint top try scorer.
"I was forced to undergo surgery on a shoulder this summer and finally got back playing again a few weeks ago."
Lewis played for London Welsh Academy for three seasons for the under-19s and under-21s.
He captained the under-19s in his last season with the academy and was also an under-18 Wales youth triallist although he failed to make the final cut.
Lewis has played county rugby at all age groups and represented the county men's first team last season, along with Stevenage team-mates Adam Amos and Neil Bamber.
He added: "I will always be open to new ideas from anybody willing to share them and am sincerely looking forward to taking up this role and building on our recent success and help make Stevenage Town a strong force in county rugby."
You can contact him on 08717 169095, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.stevenagerugby.co.uk