Ryan Jones

Ryan Paul Jones MBE (born 13 March 1981) is a former Wales international rugby union player who played at number eight, blindside flanker or second row. He has been involved in three Grand Slam wins, in 2005, as captain in 2008, and 2012. He is one of a small group of Welsh players to have won three Grand Slams including Gerald Davies, Gareth Edwards, JPR Williams, Adam Jones, Gethin Jenkins and Alun Wyn Jones.[1]

Ryan Jones
Ryan Jones. Wales Grand Slam Celebration, Senedd 19 March 2012.jpg
Birth nameRyan Paul Jones
Date of birth (1981-03-13) 13 March 1981 (age 40)
Place of birthNewport, Wales
Height196 cm (6 ft 5 in)
Weight114 kg (17 st 13 lb; 251 lb)
SchoolBassaleg Comprehensive School
Rugby union career
Position(s) Number 8, Flanker, Lock
Senior career
Years Team Apps (Points)
Celtic Warriors
Correct as of 21 March 2015
National team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
British & Irish Lions
Correct as of 17 Nov 2013 (UTC)

Early lifeEdit

Jones was born in Newport, and played junior football for Bristol City as a goalkeeper until the age of 14. He took up rugby union at age 17 to be with his friends at Risca RFC.[2]

Ryan Jones studied at UWIC, now Cardiff Metropolitan University gaining a BSc (Hons) from 1999 to 2002. He played over a 100 games for UWIC RFC and captained the 1st's in his last year. Ryan said of the University: "I was a student at Cardiff Met's Cyncoed Campus for three years. I was really inspired by the ethos of sporting excellence and University rugby was the springboard for my international career” Ryan met his wife Alisa Jones at Cardiff Metropolitan University and was made an Honorary Fellow of the University in 2008.

Club careerEdit

Jones started his club career with Newport RFC making just one appearance as a replacement for Alix Popham versus Bridgend in May 1999. After leaving Newport he made 12 appearances for Bridgend RFC, before moving on to the Celtic Warriors at the start of regional rugby in 2003. In 2004, when the Celtic Warriors were disbanded he was offered a contract with the Ospreys, who went on to win the Celtic League in 2004–05 and its replacement, the Celtic League in 2006–07. Jones was appointed captain of the Ospreys at the start of the 2007–08 season and under his captaincy the team went on to win the Anglo-Welsh Cup in 2007–08, beating Leicester Tigers in the final at Twickenham and the Magners League for the third time in 2009–10, beating Leinster at the RDS Arena in Dublin in the play-off final. He was succeeded as captain by his Wales and British & Irish Lions colleague Alun Wyn Jones at the start of the 2010–11 season. On 24 March 2014, Jones signed for English club Bristol Rugby, who were competing in the RFU Championship, on a two-year contract from the 2014-15 season.[3]

Jones retired from rugby in 2015 on medical advice following a reoccurring shoulder injury.[4]

International careerEdit

Jones made his international debut for Wales against South Africa in November 2004.[5] He featured in Wales' 2005 Grand Slam-winning side.

Many supporters were surprised when he was not initially selected for the 44-man squad for the 2005 British & Irish Lions tour to New Zealand. He was later called up as a replacement for the injured Simon Taylor. After his performance in the 30–19 win over Otago he was selected for the squad for the first test. He came on as a replacement and went on to start in the final two tests.

In January 2008, Jones was appointed captain of Wales by new coach Warren Gatland.[6] In his first Six Nations tournament as captain, he led his team to a second Grand Slam in four years.[7]

In November 2008, Ryan Jones and Shane Williams became the first Welsh players to be nominated in a group of five players for the IRB International Player of the Year award, first awarded in 2001. Shane Williams was duly selected as the 2008 International Player of the Year.[8]

In April 2009, Jones was omitted from the 2009 British & Irish Lions tour to South Africa.[9] He was subsequently called up to join the squad on 9 June after Stephen Ferris pulled out with a knee injury,[10] however within days of arriving in South Africa he was declared unfit by the Lions medical team due to head injuries he had sustained in a previous Wales test match.[11]

Jones was named captain of the Welsh team for the Autumn internationals in 2009, when the side faced New Zealand, Samoa, Argentina and Australia.

Jones featured in all five of Wales' 2012 Six Nations matches, starting two, as he and the team secured a third Grand Slam in seven years. He also featured heavily in the following years championship, captaining Wales in three of the five games, only missing the final 30-3 defeat of England through injury, as Wales defended their championship title.

Jones held the record as Wales most capped captain by overtaking the record of 28 caps held by Ieuan Evans on 16 November 2012 versus Samoa.[12] Jones' record of 33 caps as captain was surpassed by Sam Warburton on 14 March 2015.

He was appointed Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) in the 2021 Birthday Honours for services to rugby union football and charitable fundraising in Wales.[13]

International triesEdit

Try Opponent Location Venue Competition Date Result
1   Scotland Edinburgh, Scotland Murrayfield 2005 Six Nations 13 March 2005 Win
2   Australia Sydney, Australia Sydney Football Stadium 2012 Summer Internationals 23 June 2012 Loss

Personal lifeEdit

His father, Stephen Jones, was a police officer in the Gwent Constabulary, based in Cwmbran.

On 11 July 2009, he married his longtime girlfriend Ailsa, a Sports Therapist at Swansea City A.F.C..[14]


  1. ^ https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/rugby-union/17416299
  2. ^ "Ryan Jones in launch of rugby competition for junior stars". walesonline.co.uk. 1 December 2011. Retrieved 16 January 2013.
  3. ^ "Ryan Jones: Bristol sign Wales forward from Ospreys". BBC Sport. Retrieved 24 March 2014.
  4. ^ "Ryan Jones: Wales and Bristol forward retires from rugby". BBC Sport. 20 August 2015. Retrieved 24 February 2015.
  5. ^ Ryan Jones player biography Scrum.com
  6. ^ Ryan Jones is Wales captain, Martyn Williams returns Daily Post 14 January 2008
  7. ^ Boyo wonder The Guardian, 23 November 2008
  8. ^ "Williams wins top rugby accolade". BBC Online. 23 November 2008. Retrieved 9 January 2010.
  9. ^ "Ryan Jones suffers shock omission". BBC Sport. 21 April 2009. Retrieved 23 April 2009.
  10. ^ "Jones called up after Ferris blow". BBC Sport. British Broadcasting Corporation. 9 June 2009. Retrieved 9 June 2009.
  11. ^ "Ryan Jones makes swift Lions exit". BBC Sport. 12 June 2009. Retrieved 13 June 2009.
  12. ^ "Ryan Jones breaks captaincy record". Bbc.co.uk. 14 November 2012. Retrieved 1 February 2014.
  13. ^ "No. 63377". The London Gazette (Supplement). 12 June 2021. p. B19.
  14. ^ Wales skipper Ryan Jones weds Wales Online, 12 July 2009

External linksEdit