Six Nations 2020: Warrior, winner and leader – record-breaking Alun Wyn Jones has stood the test of time

By Peter Thompson 30 October 2020 15
Six Nations 2020: Warrior, winner and leader – record-breaking Alun Wyn Jones has stood the test of time

Alun Wyn Jones will become the most capped player in Test history on Saturday and the legendary Wales captain's record against Scotland suggests he will be celebrating with a win.

Jones will break new ground at Parc y Scarlets when he wins a 149th international cap, surpassing New Zealand great Richie McCaw's tally.

The talismanic lock's appearance on the final day of the Six Nations will be his 140th for Wales and he has played nine times for the British and Irish Lions in a stellar career.

A fierce competitor and inspirational leader, the 35-year-old made his Wales debut against Argentina in June and has gone on to become one of the all-time greats.

With the use of Opta data, we reflect on Jones' Test career so far as he prepares to break the world record on home soil.

 

TAKING ON ALL COMERS

The towering back-row has faced 18 different countries over the years and beaten them all at least once.

He has more Test wins over Scotland than any other country, which bodes well for this weekend, with 10 triumphs in 12 contests.

England are the opponents Jones has faced the most, starting all 21 times against the Red Rose – losing 12 and winning nine.

He does not have fond memories of New Zealand, beating the All Blacks just once in 15 Tests.

 

LIONS LINCHPIN 

His Lions selections over the last 11 years are all the evidence you need of Jones' incredible durability and consistency.

He has played all nine Lions Tests since 2009, starting seven and coming off the bench twice. No other player has featured in more than six in that time.

Jones stepped in to captain the side in the series-clinching victory over Australia in 2013 and started all three Tests in the drawn series with New Zealand three years ago.

He will be hoping to get the nod for a fourth tour under Warren Gatland next year, when the Lions are due to face South Africa 12 years after Jones was selected for the representational side to travel to the same country.

 

CAPTAIN FANTASTIC

Sam Warburton is the only player to have captained Wales more often than Jones.

Ospreys great Jones has been skipper on 37 occasions, with Warburton leading his country 49 times before retiring two years ago.

Ryan Jones (33) is third on the list, with Ieuan Evans (28) and Colin Charvis (22) making up the top five.

 

A KEY TO GATLAND'S SUCCESS

Gatland was a great success in his 12-year reign as Wales head coach and Jones played a big hand in that.

He made 116 appearances during the New Zealander's long tenure, winning 62 of those matches.

Wales won four Six Nations titles and three Grand Slams with Gatland at the helm and Jones was the only player to make 100 or more appearances during his time in charge.

About Author

Peter Thompson

Comment