Chris Stirling will move Cornish Pirates forward says coach Alan Paver

Chris Stirling and Alan Paver
Chris Stirling did some mentoring with Alan Paver (right) in 2016

Cornish Pirates coach Alan Paver says Chris Stirling's appointment as director of rugby will help move the Championship club forward.

The 56-year-old New Zealander is returning to the Pirates in the summer from Yorkshire Carnegie more than six years after leaving the Mennaye.

"I think it's a great statement and very forward thinking," Paver said.

"His experience is key in making sure we've got one guy at least looking at what's next," he told BBC South West.

Stirling was Pirates' high performance manager from 2009 to 2012 before returning to his homeland to work with the New Zealand Rugby Football Union.

He then worked with Super Rugby side Hurricanes before joining Yorkshire as director of rugby in March 2018.

Stirling, who has agreed a three-year deal, took the Pirates to the Championship play-off final in 2011 before losing to Worcester, but the club won the British and Irish Cup in 2010 under his leadership.

The Pirates have ambitions to play in the Premiership once the planned new Stadium for Cornwall is built.

"We've got our hearts and minds set on promotion," Paver added.

"We want to make sure we've got ourselves in the best possible position to give that a go.

"We want to be up and amongst the big boys in the Premiership, but we understand that that journey's going to be long and going to be tough, but the only way to do that is to make sure that we're all going in the right direction."

King is latest new Pirate recruit

Bedford Blues prop Hayden King has agreed a two year contract to join the Pirates in the summer.

The 23-year-old has also played for England Counties and Blackheath.

"As another good young prop, loose-head Hayden is an exciting prospect who we are delighted to sign," Paver said.

"I think he has developed terrifically with Bedford during this season and every time I have seen him play has proved a very capable scrummager who always gives one hundred per cent."