Newcastle Falcons are saddened to learn of the death of former player Paul Van-Zandvliet, who passed away on Wednesday following a battle against an inoperable brain tumour.
Originally joining the club in 1992, Paul, or Tank as he was known within rugby circles, was part of the Falcons promotion push from the Second Division into the Premiership and then, part of the Falcons title winning squad of 1997/1998,
After retiring from the professional game in 1999, Tank remained part of the local rugby scene with involvements at North Shields, Percy Park and Whitley Bay Rockliffe.
Having been diagnosed with his illness in early 2016, the prop who made 22 Premiership Rugby appearances for the club met his condition in typically uncompromising fashion and set about raising funds for charity and for the foundation set up to support his young daughter Hope-Elle.
Those efforts included a benefit game at Kingston Park Stadium last April, when former team-mates rallied behind the North Shields born front rower to put on a star-studded game.
All at Newcastle Falcons extend their deepest sympathies and heartfelt condolences to Paul’s family and friends at this difficult time.
Funeral details will be confirmed by the Van Zandvliet family in due course