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Exeter forward Aidon Davis has been diagnosed with cancer.

Aidon Davis: Exeter forward receiving treatment for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma
Aidon Davis: Exeter forward receiving treatment for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma

The 29-year-old South African back row has non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma – a cancer of the lymphatic system.

It is the same illness that has affected former Scotland centre Scott Hastings, while fly-half Sam Leeming returned from the illness to play for Championship side Jersey Reds in 2021.

Davis will have chemotherapy for the illness, which will stop him playing for the next few months.

“I will continue training as treatment allows and be there for the team, in any way possible,” he told the Exeter website.

“Myself and the doctors are very positive about the treatment and the results it will bring.

“I want to thank my wife for being by my side every step of the way, and my family and friends – especially my Chiefs family, the players, coaching staff, medical staff and everyone in the organisation for being there for me, supporting me and being so understanding.

“I’ll be back very soon, better and healthier than ever.”

Davis has played 21 times for the Chiefs since joining from South African club Cheetahs in the summer of 2022, scoring four tries.

His last appearance came as a replacement in Exeter’s Premiership defeat at Bath last month.

“Obviously, this is a tough time for Aidon and his family but fortunately Aidon was smart enough to get his initial concerns checked with the club’s medical staff, which has resulted in a swift diagnosis and therefore early and immediate treatment,” director of rugby Rob Baxter said.

“We at the Chiefs are all right behind him in his fight to get 100% well again and I know Aidon is desperate to continue getting into the club and training and partaking in club activities whenever he can.”

“He is an incredibly strong and popular character and I know all our supporters will join myself, the staff and players in supporting him wherever and whenever we can.”

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