Ex-Barnstaple colt Dave Lewis to join Exeter Chiefs from Gloucester
Former Barnstaple colt Dave Lewis is returning to Devon to play for Exeter Chiefs.
The scrum half, 23, will take up a two-year contract next season after spending six years with Gloucester.
Lewis said: "It's never easy to say goodbye at any time, but I do feel the time is right for me to try a new challenge and going to the Chiefs will hopefully bring the best out of me.
"It's exciting and I am really looking forward to the move. In a strange way it's like going home for me because I still have my family and a lot of friends down in Devon.
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"The Chiefs are a side I've kept an eye on for some time, especially since they got into the Premiership, and they are a team who play with a lot of attacking intent, pace and they play a good brand of rugby.
"I knew a bit about the place already but, having talked to Rob (Baxter, head coach), I liked what he had to say and the direction the club is taking.
"My parents have also kept me informed about things like the stadium redevelopment, so even from the outside you can see the club is making positive steps on and off the field.
"Since they've come into the Premiership they've shown they have a real good work ethic within the group and that they are a tough side to beat.
"Also you can see it's a very professional environment and that they've got some great players within the squad."
Lewis grew up in Barnstaple and attended St Michael's School, Tawstock, before winning a scholarship at Blundell's School, Tiverton, and going on to Ivybridge College.
He joined Gloucester in 2007, making 88 appearances, and played for England under-20s at the IRB Junior World Championships in Japan in 2009, scoring a try in defeat to New Zealand in the final. He had already represented his country at under-16 and 18 level.
Lewis progressed through the junior teams at Barnstaple, where he was coached by current director of rugby Kevin Squire and played alongside future Barum first-teamers Luke Berry, Jason Slade, Josh Squire, Will Topps, Gary Turner and Nielson Webber.
Baxter said: "Dave is a young guy with bags of Premiership experience already.
"He's a local guy and if he was based at Ivybridge now, in our academy, he would never have gone through our fingers and would be playing at Exeter, so it's nice to get a local lad back."