The Cornish Pirates can confirm that wing Ashley Smith has today signed a contract that will see him join the club on loan from London Welsh until the end of the season.

Commenting with reference to their latest signing, Cornish Pirates head coach Ian Davies said:“After featuring a good number of times for London Welsh last season, his chances in 2012-13 have been limited.”

Ian added: “Ashley is blessed with genuine pace and has the attributes to lay down a real marker for us, especially when the pitches firm up.”

Born in Croydon, 'Ash' first started playing rugby at the age of seven at Chipstead RFC, before later  moving to Rosslyn Park to further develop his rugby ability. He played for Surrey at youth level and for England Schools under 16s in 2007, and picked up by London Wasps Academy as an apprentice he attended Twyford Church of England High School's sixth form.

Ashley went to Loughborough University and played there alongside Phil Burgess. He made 15 appearances and scored 10 tries for Loughborough Students in National League 2 North in 2009/10, and in the following season after joining Stourbridge in February scored four tries for them in 13 appearances made in National 1.

Joining London Welsh in June, 2011, Ashley made his debut in the Middlesex Sevens, and then played his first full game against London Irish in a pre-season friendly. In total, before joining the Cornish Pirates on loan, he had made 17 appearances for the 'Welsh' and had scored three tries.

Mentioning his 'Sevens' involvement, Ashley last summer captained London Welsh in the J.P. Morgan Asset Management Premiership Rugby Sevens series, and includes Wolfpack Sevens, Marauders and Templar among former Sevens teams that he has played for.

A member of a sporting family, Ashley's father played rugby on the wing for Reigate, and his two brothers Lance and Aston play football. Ash himself has also played a little soccer and been an amateur boxer as a former member of South Norwood & Victory ABC.