Jarrod Evans was thrilled to scoop a double at the Cardiff Blues End of Season awards, following a stunning breakthrough campaign.
Evans picked up the Stratstone Land Rover Cardiff Discovery of the Season and the Players’ Player of the Season, sponsored by Sprios, after making 23 appearances and scoring 183 points.
He was humbled to receive the plaudits and was delighted with the progress made this season both individually and collectively, which culminated in a stunning European Challenge Cup final triumph.
Evans said: “It’s a massive achievement for myself, it could have gone to a lot of the boys but I am just grateful to receive the awards.
“We didn’t get off to the best of starts with some tough fixtures against some Irish teams away but we definitely turned a corner in November, December and that togetherness pulled us through and contributed to the way we finished.
“I didn’t expect to play as much as I did, especially being out last year with my jaw. I was happy to come back from that and thought I would just pick up the odd game but I’ve been involved a lot.
“The coaches, along with the players, showed confidence in me, which gave me confidence and I can’t thank them all enough,
“Now I’m looking forward to next year. It will be a different challenge with a new coaching group, some players leaving and others coming in. I can’t wait to get started already to build on what we have achieved this season, which was pretty special.”
Evans is just one of many academy products to have come through in recent seasons.
An impressive 13 of the match-day 23 that triumphed over Gloucester in Bilbao were graduates from the region’s pathway and Evans believes that conveyor belt of young talent combined with experience has been a key factor in the Blues success.
He added: “It’s been a big factor in a lot of our performances, a lot of us have come through together, we understand the way we all play, we like playing together and are all really close mates.
“When you chuck that in with really good, world-class players it is a great mix. The likes of Nick (Williams), Rey (Lee-Lo), Willis (Halaholo), Chicken (Gareth Anscombe), Lloyd (Williams), Melon (Gethin Jenkins), they’ve all been around for a while and bring so much.”