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Jones backs namesake to suceed

Guinness PRO12 Editor

14 Sep 2010


Wales captain Ryan Jones believes his international team mate Alun Wyn Jones is the ideal man to lead the Ospreys as the Welsh side attempt to defend their Magners League Crown.

Ospreys head coach Scott Johnson made the decision to hand the captaincy to the lock, easing the pressure on Jones who will lead his country into next summer’s World Cup.

“I think Alun Wyn will do a fantastic job,” Jones told the Western Mail.

“Captaincy in this day and age is not just about turning up on a Saturday and walking out first. There is a lot more that goes into it, the preparation, commercial stuff and being with the coaches – it can be tough.

“I did it for three years and I thought I did a pretty good job, but I understand the thought process behind the decision.

"I am not doing that role now and it allows me to concentrate on trying to ensure I retain the same role with Wales.”

Jones led the Ospreys to their third league title last season with victory over Leinster in the Grand Final in Dublin and the 29 year-old, who became a father for the first time in the summer, believes his new off-field responsibilities have changed his outlook.

“It does change your perspective on things,” added Jones.

“Certain things don’t matter as much but it hasn’t really changed my make-up that much. I am very competitive and, come Saturday, I always want to win. Even if it’s 3-0, it doesn’t bother me.

“You have a baby and your priorities change slightly. When you get home he is smiling at you and doesn’t care if you have had a good or bad day.”

Jones missed the opening two rounds of the Magners League with the knee injury he picked up in Wales’ second Test against New Zealand in June but the back-rower is near to a return.

The Ospreys began the season with a narrow defeat in Ulster before beating newcomers Benetton Treviso at the Liberty Stadium last Friday.

And having missed out on a first Italian visit to Swansea, Jones is hopeful he will be back in action when Aironi Rugby arrive in Wales on September 25.

“I am back running and need another week or so on my feet.

“I am training and will be available for selection soon and I would like to have figured quite heavily by the end of September.”

The Ospreys face a tough trip to Munster this weekend, with the Red Army playing at Thomond Park for the first time this season.

The Welsh region will be looking for a repeat of last season’s memorable triumph at the same venue when they returned home with a 15-11 victory.