Rugby

Adam Jones Channelled His Inner GAA Reserve Manager For Harlequins At The Weekend

Adam Jones Channelled His Inner GAA Reserve Manager For Harlequins At The Weekend

Adam Jones showed serious commitment to the Harlequins cause at the weekend, and the 'Adam, have you your boots?' scenario was very GAA.

We all know the reserve team coach who has always travelled to matches with the sneaky pair of boots in the back seat. Hidden safely away from plain sight, he tries to ignore them but inside he's dying to whip them out and give himself a few minutes of action at the end of a game. All he wants is one last chance to lamp some young buck or hoof one last heroic clearance from the full back line. So he names himself as a sub and hopes that one blessed day all the proper subs will appear injured, sick, hungover or all three - giving him the excuse to "throw himself on".

It's rare that this sort of carry on happens in Junior B football. Much less in top-level professional rugby.

Adam Jones, the former Wales and Lions prop, showed just how much of a pro he was after a bizarre set of circumstances led to him having to tog out unexpectedly for Harlequins against Sale.

As Sky Sports report, Jones - player/coach for Quins - was chilling out at home in Wales, having been told he was off-duty for the day. Until Graham Rowntree, the forwards coach, fell ill and Jones was given a call at 11:30 to rush down the M4 to the Stoop to help prepare the forwards for the match, which began at 3. That was all well and good until Joe Marler hurt his calf in the pre-match warm-up and Jones found himself having to sit on the bench and prepare himself for possibly a cameo at the end of the match.

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But amazingly, 20 minutes in, replacement tighthead Will Collier injured his ankle and loosehead prop Owen Evans went off injured as well. Meaning that Jones had to come on and play a full 60 minutes. Quins Director of Rugby John Kingston said of Jones:

I've been working in this industry for 20 years and I don't think I know a more professional man.

It's a good thing Jones, thinking he was off for the day, didn't go on the cans the night before. Or maybe he did, and he's even more of a hero than we realise.

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Conall Cahill

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