Redruth prop Peter Joyce has become the latest recruit at the Cornish Pirates on the eve of their cross-Tamar derby against Plymouth Albion at the Mennaye Field.
Twenty-six year old Joyce started his final game for the Reds today in the Cornish derby against the Cornish All Blacks, helping the Reds to a 46-24 victory, bringing the curtain down on an illustrious 8-season career at the Recreation Ground.
Consistently one of the best props in the National Leagues Joyce first caught the eye of the Pirates in early 2007 when he played for the club against Newbury.
Last month he again turned out for the Pirates as a replacement in the pre-season win over Newport. With the ongoing calf problem suffered by Alan Paver still a concern for the Penzance-based club they acted decisively in signing Joyce.
Dorset-born Joyce said: "I'm very grateful to Redruth. I was contractually bound for the season so they didn't need to do anything. I think it sends a great message that the club's all about opportunities and players getting better. I'm definitely a lucky boy"
"Signing for the Pirates is really exciting. I always said that if the opportunity arose then I'd do it, but the reality is that it's daunting to quit my job and take the plunge. Fingers crossed, I'll have got some game time by Christmas and have proved my worth."
And he added: "I'd like to say a massive thank you to all of the fans, especially all the guys and girls that travel to support us away from home. It's amazing to go to far-away places like Newcastle and still see plenty of Red shirts; it gives us all a massive boost."
Redruth Secretary Roger Watson paid tribute to Joyce adding: "His step up to the Championship is in many ways long overdue and everyone at Redruth wishes Peter all the best in his continuing rugby career."
With the deal expected to be concluded on Monday Joyce will however be unavailable to the Pirates for the big game against Plymouth.