Jersey Reds have handed a Championship chance to 21-year-old lock forward Max Ayling.
Standing two metres tall, Ayling was part of the academy section at London Irish from 2013 to 2017 and represented England at under 16 level during this time.
In 2018, after leaving Sherbourne School, Ayling relocated to Wales, spending three years with the Dragons and earning an international call-up for the Welsh under 20s during the 2019 Six Nations.
Director of Rugby Harvey Biljon said Ayling had the opportunity to impress after joining the Reds on a rolling contract.
“We were looking to boost our resources in the second row and felt that Max had the raw ingredients to come into a full-time professional environment and develop his game. He has a long way to go, but has shown a really positive attitude during his first couple of weeks as part of the squad.”
Ayling will travel to France later this week as part of the Reds touring party for the opening match action of the new season, when they will take on French second-tier side Rugby Club Vannes on Friday, with the match at the Stade de la Rabine kicking off at 7.30pm French time.
The Reds are building up to pre-season matches on their home turf against Gallagher Premiership opposition – Leicester Tigers on Friday August 27th (k-o 5pm) and Sale Sharks on Friday September 3rd (k-o 7.45pm) – and are then due to start their Championship campaign on the weekend of September 18th with a trip to London Scottish.