Norwich have selected the youngest captain in their 126-year history.

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At 18, David Micklethwaite takes over the helm from last year’s captain Jonathan Wheater.

Explaining the decision to give such a young player the armband, director of rugby David Everitt said: “David has been a stalwart of the side in last year’s campaign and was awarded player of the year.

“Undoubtedly a huge talent, he has a mature, analytical and expansive approach to the game, and will lead by example in every training session and game.

“He is a product of Norwich’s successful youth programme and has represented the club at every age group.

“David has already represented Eastern Counties under 20s and was a product of the Elite Players Developmental Group and was revered by numerous opposition coaches last year.”

David will benefit from some of the vast experience the side has to offer as Wheater, vice-captain John Snowling and former captain Gareth Leake will be on hand to offer their support to allow him to cultivate his own leadership style in due course.

Norwich have also selected Josh Ives as the club captain and playing vice captain.

Everitt said: “Josh has a mature, enthusiastic and gregarious nature that belies his age and is guaranteed to inspire every player, whatever their standard, to try and achieve the level of enjoyment and commitment he brings to the club both on and off the pitch.

“As a former England U16 hooker, Josh has a tremendous amount of talent and experience that will complement and help David.”

Everitt’s policy is to promote and develop talent from within the club, making it truly a community club instead of buying in players.

The policy of sustained growth from within the club’s own ranks has been shown to work at Norwich Rugby Club last year with four 17 or 18-year-olds consistently playing first team rugby last season. Chris Parrott, Jordie Walker, Aaron Nicholson and David developed hugely last year and will be the future of the club.

Everitt continued: “Some people may see this as a bold move for the club, but having watched David develop both on and off the field we are confident that we have the right person to lead the team as we push for promotion.

“The committee and all the players are behind David and will provide him with our full support.”

Norwich are also fortunate in having Andy Ball, following Mark Loveday, who actively supported the integration of the youth section into the seniors, as president. Ball has been a good servant of the club over the last 25 years and has served the club as player, youth and mini coach and a very successful Lions manager.

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