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Jones: When you’re in this position, you want to do it for as long as possible

Jones: When you’re in this position, you want to do it for as long as possible

Alun Wyn Jones with daughter Georgie after the third place play-off against New Zealand. ©INPHO/Billy Stickland

  • Alun Wyn Jones captained Wales to the semi-finals of the World Cup
  • He will continue under new coach Wayne Pivac
  • Jones has captained Wales under coach Warren Gatland who is stepping down

The Rugby World Cup marked the end of an era for Wales as Warren Gatland stepped down after 12 years at the helm.

Wayne Pivac has the daunting task of replacing Gatland, but his job will be made easier by having Alun Wyn Jones alongside him.

Jones, who led Wales to the Grand Slam earlier this year, made it very clear that he has no plans to retire when asked the question in the lead-up to Friday’s third-place play-off defeat to New Zealand.

He said: “When you’re in this position, you want to do it for as long as possible. I’ve got a bit longer yet!”

Jones even had a little joke at the expense of the French journalist who asked him about a possible retirement, humorously saying he’d see him in February – Les Bleus travel to Cardiff in round three of the 2020 Guinness Six Nations.

At 34, Jones admitted that this would be his last World Cup, but the fire is still burning as he looks to be a part of the new Welsh side under Pivac.

And with a strong core of young players to select from, Jones believes Pivac is walking into a dream opportunity.

He said: “Obviously there is change on the horizon. Change is something people are either fearful of or excited about – I think there’s going to be a large number of boys involved in that.

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“The age-profile and experience is something as a coaching setup coming you’re going to be licking your lips over. They will have people out of the blocks and with international experience already.

“There’s a lot of other players in regional rugby who will get some experience, you marry that up with the foundations that have been set – it’s great for the guys coming in.”