- Former Wasps Ashley Smith in summer trial with Welsh
- Wing looking to impress in Vauxhall Middlesex Charity Sevens
Photo: RFU Archive
Former Wasps Academy starlet Ashley Smith is keen to impress at London Welsh this summer, and he’s targeting the Vauxhall Middlesex Charity Sevens at Twickenham on July 9.
Smith is two weeks into his summer trial with the Exiles and could make his debut when Welsh open their Middlesex Sevens challenge against Championship rivals Plymouth Albion, kick-off 12:30pm.
An exciting talent, the versatile 6' 2" can cover wing, centre and full back and is a powerfully elusive runner with a keen eye for the tryline.
Smith, 20, spent two seasons at the Wasps Academy before progressing to Loughborough Students RFC, where he was a try scorer as Loughborough edged out UWIC to win the 2010 BUCS Rugby Union Trophy Competition at Richmond RFC.
In addition he made 15 appearances for Loughborough Students in National League 2 North in 2009/10, scoring ten tries.
He gained experience of National League 1 last season when he joined Stourbridge RFC in February 2011, scoring four tries in 13 appearances.
His first start can in a 55-13 defeat against eventual league champions London Scottish at the Athletics Ground, Richmond, while his first try for the club came the following month away at Redruth.
The goal is to play in the Championship
Smith played for Rosslyn Park at Youth and U19 and has represented Surrey at county level from U14s to U19s, as well as gaining representative honours for England U16s in 2007. He also played for London & South East at U16 and U18.
An accomplished Sevens player, Smith lists Wolfpack Sevens, Marauders and Templar among his former clubs. He also represented Surrey at Surrey National 7’s at Under 18.
"I’m going to be on a big stage at the Middlesex Sevens and that allows me to show what I can do, and hopefully I can impress the coaches at London Welsh," he said.
"The goal is to play in the Championship – that’s the next step after playing National League 1 and National League 2 North.
"Each level is a step up, but I think I’ve managed each step up fine so far and I’ve learnt a lot. The Championship will be one of the hardest, but I think I will be able to show what I can do on that stage.
"It’s been good; the first week was tough with all the gym work, but I’m enjoying it. There’s a good bunch of lads here."