Jones to savour comeback
September 25, 2011
Stephen Jones has battled his way back to full fitness © Getty Images
Stephen Jones has admitted that he cannot wait to take to the field for Wales' clash with Namibia in New Plymouth.
Firstly, there is the fact that the game will be the veteran fly-half's 101st in a Welsh jersey, meaning Jones will take sole possession of his country's all-time Test appearance record from former captain Gareth Thomas.
Secondly, Jones' run-out at Stadium Taranaki will be his first taste of competitive rugby in seven weeks, having suffered a calf strain during the warm-up for last month's clash with England at Twickenham.
"It's been quite tough just because I haven't been involved in the team that much," the Scarlets No.10 said. I've been doing my own programme, whether it be fitness or rehab.
"The last few weeks have been great, just to get back integrated and take part in the normal schedule and to confirm why you're here - to play some rugby."
Jones is not the only man on the verge of making history at Yarrow Stadium as Ken Owens is poised become the first Welshman to make his international debut in a World Cup since Jason Jones-Hughes in 1999 after being named among the replacements.
"I had a chance to sit on the bench against France a while ago, but didn't get the chance then (to play) so I'm really looking forward to the opportunity and the whole spectacle of it," the hooker said. "It's something I've been looking forward to my whole life, I'm really excited and can't wait to get out there."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Last year's thrashing at the hands of Wales was not the first time England have fallen to their rivals. Scrum Sevens looks at whether they have bounced back the following year
With just two rounds left in the 2014 championship, the intensity cranks up a notch at Twickenham. Tom Hamilton previews the weekend's action
"I had a perfect record against England as did a few other Welshmen. England always seemed to bring the best out of us." John Taylor on the age-old rivalry
Are the margins between the teams in the Six Nations getting smaller year-on-year? Huw Richards gives some answers