Gareth Steenson says he is is looking forward to an exciting future ahead after today committing himself to Aviva Premiership club Exeter Chiefs for a further three years.
Just a week after team-mate Phil Dollman confirmed he was staying at Sandy Park, 30-year-old Steenson is the latest member of Rob Baxter’s squad to confirm he will be prolonging his stay at Sandy Park.
Steenson, who joined the Devon club in 2008 from the Cornish Pirates, has already written his name into Exeter folklore with his on-field achievements which, to date, have seen him amass a staggering 1,565 points for the Chiefs.
Now, though, the Irishman is determined to drive the club even further forward as he looks to further enhance the claims of the Chiefs, both in the Premiership and in Europe.
"I’m absolutely over the moon with the new deal," said Steenson. "You can see where the club are going and it’s great to be part of it all. I suppose I’m one of the veterans in the squad, but to be part of all this not only now, but for the next year three years as well, is just fantastic.
"The Chiefs is a great club to be and hopefully we can progress even further over these next few years."
A cult hero amongst the Chiefs support base, Steenson’s decision to stay put in Devon will be warmly welcomed by all and sundry, particularly given his deadly accuracy with his right boot and his ability to control proceedings from the coveted No.10 jersey.
"Every year we are getting better and better," added the Dungannon-born back. "Obviously the young fellas have been here for a few years now and we’re seeing what they can do out on the pitch, plus guys like Phil and the coaches as well, they’ve all signed up for the next few years which is great.
"As I’ve said before, it’s been great being part of it all with the Chiefs, but I want to be part of the next journey for as long as I can be. To be around for the next three years is very exciting."
Having help guide the Chiefs out of the Championship and into English rugby’s top tier, Steenson admits the recent ride has been something to savour, not only for himself, but for everyone connected with the club.
He continued: "When you think back to all those tough encounters we had in the Championship – for me it’s a dream every time you come out to play on the field. You see the new stand and everything going up, plus the crowd we get at games, it’s fantastic the way the place is built.
"Yes there have been some tough times, but there have also been a lot of great times and hopefully we can have a few more."