Newport Gwent Dragons: Ashley Smith retires on medical grounds
Newport Gwent Dragons centre Ashley Smith has retired from playing rugby on medical grounds.
The Welsh region says Smith, 28, has suffered a "series of concussive events" and after "expert advice" has decided to "hang up his boots".
"I am utterly disappointed and devastated that I have been forced to retire through injury," said Smith.
"But I feel that the medical advice given to me cannot be ignored."
|In February 2015 Cardiff Blues flanker Rory Watts-Jones retired after a concussion-related injury.|
|England internationals Shontayne Hape and Andy Hazell were both forced to quit rugby after concussion injuries.|
|Centre Hape, who played 13 times for England, said he had suffered more than 20 concussions in his career while flanker Hazell struggled to recover after suffering a concussion pre-season in the summer of 2014.|
Former Wales Under-20 captain Smith, made more than 160 appearances for Dragons since joining the Rodney Parade side in 2005.
Dragons' director of rugby, Lyn Jones said it was a "big blow" for the region.
"We are all so upset at the news of Ashley's forced retirement," said Davies.
"Over his 10 years at Rodney Parade, he has been a credit to the region, himself and his family.
"We will miss his maturity, football, decision making and his experience.
"It's a big blow for us, but Ashley has made the right decision for himself and his family. We wish him well for the future."