Plymouth Albion / Rugby

Plymouth Albion confirm signing of Cornwall star Matt Shepherd

Matt Shepherd

CORNWALL’S County Championship match-winning scrum-half Matt Shepherd has accepted an offer to join Plymouth Albion.

The England Counties international had been thinking over his options since his star performance for Cornwall at Twickenham, but has now decided to join his county coach Graham Dawe at Brickfields.

Shepherd scored both the Duchy’s tries in their 18-13 final win over Lancashire and kicked five points.

IMG_8137The 25-year-old former St Austell player also scored all Cornwall’s points in their 22-16 pool win over Kent.

Dawe is pleased Shepherd has decided to try his luck at Brickfields, where he will battle it out with Cameron Setter and Jack Maunder for the number nine jersey.

“Matt’s signing is a bonus,” said Dawe. “He’ll be a great addition to the squad.

“We need competition for the shirt. I’m sure he will be hoping to be first choice, but Jack Maunder and Cameron Setter might have a say about that.

“We have a pre-season to get through first and we’ll have to see how he and the others shape up.

“But Matt can play a number of positions, which is important. He’s also got quite a bit of experience, a great work ethic and his attack kicking game and defensive game are in a pretty good place.”

Shepherd has played fly-half before but Dawe said: “At the moment that’s not a consideration.”

Matt ShepherdBut the Plymouth boss is glad of someone who can kick goals, having lost Declan Cusack, Lawrence Rayner and Elliot Clements-Hill.

“Matt has got a good strike-rate,” said Dawe. “And every team needs go-to kickers and competent back-up kickers.

“Matt does work on his kicking meticulously.”

Shepherd is the fourth member of Launceston’s 2014/15 squad that has moved to Plymouth this summer, following in the footsteps of Christian Judge, Jon Dawe and Ed Holmes, who was on loan at Polson Bridge from Exeter Chiefs.

The player said: “I’m delighted to have the opportunity to play for Plymouth Albion next season.
“I’m very excited and will relish the challenge ahead. I can’t wait to meet up with the team and get stuck in for the coming season.”


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