It’s a good time to be a Scottish-qualified rugby player. The Adventures of Vern may have drawn to a close but with the national side having scorched in as many as 14 tries over the course of the past two months, the dog days of ‘whiteline fever’ appear to have vanished, hopefully for good.
Of course, current Glasgow Warriors gaffer Gregor Townsend is taking up his new post as soon as the professional club season ends and with many comparisons drawn between Scotland and Scotstoun, the expectation is for more of the same. Additionally, many Warriors will be aiming to end their Head Coach’s time in the most impressive manner at the same time as pushing potential future international call-ups.
One man transformed since signing for Glasgow is Lee Jones, the diminutive winger who has already achieved so much despite being only 28. Having represented his country throughout various age grades, the Selkirk-born winger realised the dream of so many others by winning a full cap in Scotland narrow 2010 Calcutta Cup loss at Murrayfield, before featuring thrice more that campaign.
Jones’ has also lifted the prestigious Melrose 7s, as well as featuring at the 2014 Commonwealth Games amid winning numerous international caps in the shortened format in what was a nomadic career of sorts. Having joined Warriors initially on loan from Edinburgh Rugby, his four-year stay at Scotstoun represents the most settled time of Lee’s rugby journey to date.
And, having been awarded a new two-year deal recently, the flyer spoke of his delight at his current situation: “I feel really settled at Warriors and I guess that’s partly down to the fact I’m a more experienced player now. I wouldn’t say I’m a veteran yet but I’m one of the older heads in and around the squad so it’s a role that differs to when I was coming through with Edinburgh.”
It was the capital side with whom Lee made his rugby breakthrough, earning four full caps whilst on their books, but playing with the Scotland 7s side is what eventually led the winger to signing on a Scotstoun, as he recalled: “I was in Wellington preparing for a leg of the World Series when [Head Coach] Stevie Gemmill came up to me and suggested Glasgow were interested in getting me to play for them.
“I hadn’t heard anything about that and did find it a bit strange at the time but I was soon on a flight back to Scotland and met Gregor [Townsend] who told me they were keen to get me involved that weekend against Connacht.”
Read the full interview in SCRUM 93, handily redirected through this link: http://edition.pagesuite-professional.co.uk//launch.aspx?eid=b48dbe58-c44f-4615-9c8d-a5b7f1039c8e