“Twickenham Not Overly Intimidating Like Pretoria Or Johannesburg” – Adam Jones


Wales may be chasing their first Championship win at Twickenham since 2012, but Adam Jones believes they should travel in a confident mood.

Jones, who won 95 Wales caps and five for the Lions, knows exactly what it takes to win at Twickenham.

Adam Jones is one of three players, along with Mike Phillips and Alun Wyn Jones, who started both of Wales’s Championship victories at Twickenham, in 2008 and 2012.

In 2008 they recovered from 16-06 down at half-time to win 26-16, while in 2012, a late Scott Williams try allowed Wales to return home with a 19-12 victory.

Jones knows Twickenham well. Since he joined Harlequins in 2015, first as a player and then as scrum coach, he has been involved in several matches across the road from Quins’ Stoop home.

“When I first went there it was a bit open and a bit windy, but now it is an unbelievable stadium,” Jones said.

“We go there a couple of times a season with Quins, and it is our second home. It is not overly intimidating like Pretoria or Johannesburg, but it is a great theatre for rugby and only going to raise the Welsh boys to where they need to be.”

Against Scotland in Cardiff in Round 1 of the 2024 Six Nations Championship, Wales went 27-0 down but recovered to come within two points of winning. They may have lost 27-26, but their confidence was renewed after playing a more open style after half-time.

“The first half was a bit ropey, but we came back into it and that was good to see,” Jones said. “I thought we looked a bit shell-shocked but the way we came back into it was pretty good.

“When we tried to play structure, we didn’t kick very well to them, but when we played a bit of rugby we went really well and that is a massive confidence boost for the boys, scoring four tries. It showed their ambition and the boys’ character and their willingness to fight for each other.

“We know they’ll have to ride out a bit of a storm. They are going to come at us, and the crowd are going to get behind them and when you get through that, you realise that while they may be good players, they are just like the rest of us.

“Any English pack, you have to match them up front. They are tough side. They know it is a big game for them. They are in the transition phase like us, but it’s not daunting there anymore.

“If they can handle the pressure and not give them a big lead and a start, then we are right in the game.”