Ashley, who has been playing for Penarth Mini section since age 9, was brought to the club by his parents as he was desperate to play sport under difficult circumstances. Having been rejected on several occasions due to a medical disability, coaches at Penarth assured Ashley and his parents that his deafness wouldn't be a problem. Admittedly, other members of the team had some difficulties, but in his first season at the club, Ashley was overwhelmingly voted player of the year by his team mates and such is his progression that his name was put forward for the Vale of Glamorgan County schools under 11's team, appearing in almost all of their games.
Coaches at Penarth, Howard Morgan, Mike Adams and Paul Thomas believe taking Ashley on was one of their better decisions and he is now a vital part of the side. The only stipulation during contact is that Ashley removes his hearing aid. His parents firmly believe that this opportunity has certainly changed Ashley's life.
Sarah O'Rafferty, Sponsorship Manager of Zurich Financial Services added "Ashley has been a great success on the rugby field despite his disability and he thoroughly deserves his award".
Pictured below with Ashley receiving his Dewi Dragon award and framed Zurich 'Lions' photograph are Ben Evans, former Wales tight head prop and a favourite of Ashley's and Michael Leek, Service Centre Manager at Zurich Insurance.
For more information, please contact Angela James 029 20781742
The on and off-field benefits of schools and colleges employing a full time rugby officer as part of the WRU's school club hub initiative continue to grow with the publication of the first half term figures of the current academic year.
Despite being in a tough group for the World Series opener in Dubai, Wales 7s head coach Gareth Williams says it is an exciting challenge and his squad are in a positive frame of mind, as WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie discovers.
Wales 7s captain Luke Treharne may have only played once on the World Series, but he has full confidence in his side as they prepare for the opening two rounds of this year's series in Dubai and South Africa, as WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie discovers.
Wales 7s Manager Steff Thomas believes Luke Treharne has all the attriubutes to be a top class captain. WRU TV's Graeme Gillespie hears his reasons why as the squad prepare for the opening two legs of the new World Series in Dubai and South Africa.
The British & Irish Cup kicks off this weekend with the four Regional Premiership Select XVs flying the flag for Wales. Welsh
Sat 14 Nov: Blues Premiership Select v Nottingham (2.30) & Connacht Eagles v Dragons (2.30)
Sun 15 Nov: Yorkshire Carnegie v Ospreys Premiership Select (1.30) & Scarlets v Bedford Blues (3.00)
The Welsh Rugby Union is forming a new Youth Board with a brief to help keep more young people involved in the game during their late teenage years and beyond. The first task of the fifteen strong Board will be to analyse and consider the issues which lead to a number of youngsters drifting away from the sport between the ages of 16 and 21. To apply visit www.wru.wales/youthboard
The Foster's Challenge Cup will involve the 12 Principality Premiership sides and will run during European and British & Irish Cup weeks, providing vital fixtures for the participating clubs and an opportunity for upcoming players to step up to semi-professional rugby and make a claim for starting places within the Premiership squads.
Eighty schools and colleges in Wales now have a full time rugby officer as part of the WRU's school club hub scheme. All of the school club hub officers recently gathered at the National Centre of Excellence for various workshops.
With Liam Williams forced out of the World Cup through injury, lock Luke Charteris and Skills Coach Neil Jenkins say they have to put yesterday's defeat behind them as Wales now look ahead to another physical encounter against South Africa in the quarter-finals of the Rugby World Cup.
WRU Consultant Head of Physical Performance Paul Stridgeon praises the Physical Performance department for their work and dedication as he addresses the media ahead of Wales' Pool A clash against Australia