Kingsley Jones reveals ambition to coach the Dragons

South Wales Argus: MAN OF GWENT: Kingsley Jones in 2002 while playing for Cross Keys MAN OF GWENT: Kingsley Jones in 2002 while playing for Cross Keys

KINGSLEY Jones has revealed he would love to coach the Newport Gwent Dragons in the future and believes the struggling region has huge potential.

The 43-year-old has an impressive coaching pedigree and is tied to his job as Russia head coach until 2016.

The ex-Sale director of rugby’s CV includes an English Premiership title, secured with France boss Philippe Saint-André when the Sharks hammered Leicester 45-20 in the 2006 final. Jones also assists London Welsh chief Lyn Jones in the Aviva Premiership and the Nantyglo-born and Blaina-raised former Wales captain would relish the opportunity of coaching his home region one day.

“I’m from Gwent and I’m very proud to be from Gwent,” he said. “It’s got a massive rugby culture. I would like to be involved with a region at some point.

“Of course I can’t be choosy about which one I would do – but at some point in my coaching career I would love to coach a region and, of course, the Dragons is where I am from.”

Jones, who won ten Wales caps in the back row between 1996 and 1998, was clear he wasn’t angling for a job at Rodney Parade: “I’m not pushing myself for a job, I’ve got a contract until 2016 with Russia.

“I’ve spoken to one or two regions over the last couple of years to see about the future and I’ve certainly had positive vibes about that but I haven’t spoken to the Dragons.”

And Jones said he sympathises with the plight of the Dragons’ coaching staff who are under fire after seven defeats and just two wins in their nine competitive games so far this season.

“It is tough for them, the coaches are doing their best and the region are doing their best,” he said.

“Players will improve and develop – there are a lot of young players who will come through.

“But it’s a very tough place to learn your trade. The young players are having to try and find five years’ experience in five months.

“It’s almost impossible to do. It’s really difficult. I’m sure it gets to a point where the coaches and the supporters look at the fixture list and think, ‘where are we going to get a victory?’ “It’s Glasgow away next time out – you know that’s not easy at all.”

As well as his coaching commitments, Jones is often seen watching his youngest son Dorian playing for Keys in the Welsh Premiership, as well as his eldest, Rhys, an ex-Newport outside half, with Llandovery.

A former Abertillery, Cross Keys and Ebbw Vale player, Jones believes Gwent remains a hot bed of rugby containing plenty of rough diamonds that may not have been snapped up by the regional academy.

“Rugby is not all about money, although of course it is a massive factor,” he said.

“But let’s remember some of the positives. We’ve got so many rugby players in Gwent and I travel around the Welsh Premiership and I watch my sons playing.

“Last year, my youngest one was playing for Ebbw Vale, and I tell you if I watch them often enough, I often see a player and think, ‘that kid’s got massive potential and could be good enough’.

“Now I know we’ve got a great academy system and the Dragons one is particularly strong.

“But there are players out there who develop late and there are people out there who you could pick up.”

Jones believes the density of rugby players in Gwent is rarely matched anywhere in the world.

“We’ve got to remember there’s a hell of a lot of rugby players in this region,” he said.

“Good, young, tough kids that would relish an opportunity so it’s a positive for the region.

“I think there are more players in Gwent per square mile than almost any other place in the world apart from south Auckland.

“There aren’t too many places I’ve been where you can just pop out and watch a rugby match.

“At Sale in Cheshire, yes we had this and we had that, but you couldn’t go and pick up a couple of rugby players from down the road.”

  • BBC Scrum V pundit Kingsley Jones was speaking to the Argus after the Dragons’ 46-19 defeat to Ulster at Rodney Parade on Friday night

Comments (20)

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10:29am Wed 31 Oct 12

ten2two says...

get him involved then!
get him involved then! ten2two

11:06am Wed 31 Oct 12

Doberman1 says...

ten2two wrote:
get him involved then!
And the sooner the better - (cue outrage from the minority of DE supporters on here)
[quote][p][bold]ten2two[/bold] wrote: get him involved then![/p][/quote]And the sooner the better - (cue outrage from the minority of DE supporters on here) Doberman1

11:38am Wed 31 Oct 12

high x boy says...

best news I have heard for a while
best news I have heard for a while high x boy

11:39am Wed 31 Oct 12

saltheartfoamfollower says...

Interesting to note that he referred to the region as "the dragons"and not NEWPORT gwent dragons.Any road up I think he's worth a punt when available.
On a lighter note I trust all you Argus posters will raise a glass or 3 to the fantastic scarlets who,40 yrs today beat the worst ever side to leave N.Z.
Me? It's fingers down the throat and Yuk as BBC wales remind us once again of that fantastic achievement..
Worse than the bloody English after the 66 world cup win.lol..
Interesting to note that he referred to the region as "the dragons"and not NEWPORT gwent dragons.Any road up I think he's worth a punt when available. On a lighter note I trust all you Argus posters will raise a glass or 3 to the fantastic scarlets who,40 yrs today beat the worst ever side to leave N.Z. Me? It's fingers down the throat and Yuk as BBC wales remind us once again of that fantastic achievement.. Worse than the bloody English after the 66 world cup win.lol.. saltheartfoamfollower

11:54am Wed 31 Oct 12

monkeytennisboy says...

Buy him out of the russia contract and that investment could, and yes its a long shot with what he will have to choose from, but it could be paid back in 1 season if we could pick off the slightly better than us but incredibly poor Blues, a Heineken cup place would be worth it.
Buy him out of the russia contract and that investment could, and yes its a long shot with what he will have to choose from, but it could be paid back in 1 season if we could pick off the slightly better than us but incredibly poor Blues, a Heineken cup place would be worth it. monkeytennisboy

12:39pm Wed 31 Oct 12

Dai the Milk says...

You can have Robbie Deans or Nick Mallett in charge of Newport....it won't make any difference to where they're heading. The writing is on the wall with the current men in charge.
You can have Robbie Deans or Nick Mallett in charge of Newport....it won't make any difference to where they're heading. The writing is on the wall with the current men in charge. Dai the Milk

1:01pm Wed 31 Oct 12

Robert Shillabeer says...

Read the article first before you all start to jump for joy. He's contracted until 2016 and he said he would love to become head coach of any of the four Welsh regions not just the Dragons. Almost four years before he becomes available and the Russians won't be in any kind of hurry to let him go so it is something for 2015 at the earliest unless the Russians sack him and be honest if he doesn't do a good job for the Russians do you honestly think he would be step up for the Dragons? One to watch for the future perhaps.
Read the article first before you all start to jump for joy. He's contracted until 2016 and he said he would love to become head coach of any of the four Welsh regions not just the Dragons. Almost four years before he becomes available and the Russians won't be in any kind of hurry to let him go so it is something for 2015 at the earliest unless the Russians sack him and be honest if he doesn't do a good job for the Russians do you honestly think he would be step up for the Dragons? One to watch for the future perhaps. Robert Shillabeer

1:06pm Wed 31 Oct 12

Robert Shillabeer says...

Read the article first before you all start to jump for joy. He's contracted until 2016 and he said he would love to become head coach of any of the four Welsh regions not just the Dragons. Almost four years before he becomes available and the Russians won't be in any kind of hurry to let him go so it is something for 2015 at the earliest unless the Russians sack him and be honest if he doesn't do a good job for the Russians do you honestly think he would be step up for the Dragons? One to watch for the future perhaps.
Read the article first before you all start to jump for joy. He's contracted until 2016 and he said he would love to become head coach of any of the four Welsh regions not just the Dragons. Almost four years before he becomes available and the Russians won't be in any kind of hurry to let him go so it is something for 2015 at the earliest unless the Russians sack him and be honest if he doesn't do a good job for the Russians do you honestly think he would be step up for the Dragons? One to watch for the future perhaps. Robert Shillabeer

1:06pm Wed 31 Oct 12

monkeytennisboy says...

Sport management contracts aint worth the paper they are written, anyone can walk away as long as someone pays the bill, if he wants the job let him come, things cant get any worse down there and he would be a major shot in the arm.
Sport management contracts aint worth the paper they are written, anyone can walk away as long as someone pays the bill, if he wants the job let him come, things cant get any worse down there and he would be a major shot in the arm. monkeytennisboy

1:50pm Wed 31 Oct 12

Robert Shillabeer says...

Buy out from his contract is detailed within the contract itself, unless you know how much it would cost you can't say. If you have that knowledge perhaps you could enlighten us all how much it would cost? The Russians will not let him go cheaply and what Welsh region has the cash to buy him out, not the Dragons me thinks. Realistically it is simply paper talk mid week stuff just to get everyone talking about something that may never happen because there is not much else to fill the pages of the paper. There have been mutterings about him becoming the Dragons coach for a few years now but it never seems to be based on any firm grounds. He would do a good job for any region in my view but why did he go to Russia and not a Welsh region in the first place?
Buy out from his contract is detailed within the contract itself, unless you know how much it would cost you can't say. If you have that knowledge perhaps you could enlighten us all how much it would cost? The Russians will not let him go cheaply and what Welsh region has the cash to buy him out, not the Dragons me thinks. Realistically it is simply paper talk mid week stuff just to get everyone talking about something that may never happen because there is not much else to fill the pages of the paper. There have been mutterings about him becoming the Dragons coach for a few years now but it never seems to be based on any firm grounds. He would do a good job for any region in my view but why did he go to Russia and not a Welsh region in the first place? Robert Shillabeer

2:24pm Wed 31 Oct 12

monkeytennisboy says...

I think he was impressed with the russians optimism and desire to play and improve, obviously a decent salary helps, hes here most of the time on scrum v etc so i cant see why he cant do russia part time, its not like they have loads of fixtures, theres room here for negotiation, lets hbope someone down rp has his number.
I think he was impressed with the russians optimism and desire to play and improve, obviously a decent salary helps, hes here most of the time on scrum v etc so i cant see why he cant do russia part time, its not like they have loads of fixtures, theres room here for negotiation, lets hbope someone down rp has his number. monkeytennisboy

2:31pm Wed 31 Oct 12

Dai Trying says...

The DRAGONS need a change at the top, he might just be the man for the job and why not keep DE on as his assistant. I would think he went to Russia because they asked him to, unlike the regions who may well have been happy with there coaching teams at the time.
The DRAGONS need a change at the top, he might just be the man for the job and why not keep DE on as his assistant. I would think he went to Russia because they asked him to, unlike the regions who may well have been happy with there coaching teams at the time. Dai Trying

2:55pm Wed 31 Oct 12

rightsideup says...

Sir Terry,Dylan-any chance of a nice gesture?.......no,no
t that one!!
Sir Terry,Dylan-any chance of a nice gesture?.......no,no t that one!! rightsideup

3:12pm Wed 31 Oct 12

Robert Shillabeer says...

Dai Trying wrote:
The DRAGONS need a change at the top, he might just be the man for the job and why not keep DE on as his assistant. I would think he went to Russia because they asked him to, unlike the regions who may well have been happy with there coaching teams at the time.
Interesting idea perhaps he could replace Beale and let DE continue to do front line coaching, he would make a good director of rugby but the cash to buy him out is a massive block to all that.
[quote][p][bold]Dai Trying[/bold] wrote: The DRAGONS need a change at the top, he might just be the man for the job and why not keep DE on as his assistant. I would think he went to Russia because they asked him to, unlike the regions who may well have been happy with there coaching teams at the time.[/p][/quote]Interesting idea perhaps he could replace Beale and let DE continue to do front line coaching, he would make a good director of rugby but the cash to buy him out is a massive block to all that. Robert Shillabeer

4:22pm Wed 31 Oct 12

Dai the Milk says...

All irrelevant twaddle. This is a town club masquerading as a region and living on a shoestring. Russia may be backward in rugby terms but they are one of the richest countries in the world with huge resources of gas and oil. Why do you think Kingsley went there? To get a sun tan? Get real.
All irrelevant twaddle. This is a town club masquerading as a region and living on a shoestring. Russia may be backward in rugby terms but they are one of the richest countries in the world with huge resources of gas and oil. Why do you think Kingsley went there? To get a sun tan? Get real. Dai the Milk

4:25pm Wed 31 Oct 12

Dai the Milk says...

You would be much better off taking a closer look at the guy in the picture with him. Byron has a wealth of experience and knowledge. He's also still a **** sight fitter than half your players.
You would be much better off taking a closer look at the guy in the picture with him. Byron has a wealth of experience and knowledge. He's also still a **** sight fitter than half your players. Dai the Milk

5:12pm Wed 31 Oct 12

monkeytennisboy says...

Not sure whether the Scotland caps are released for the weekend, their training camp was 29th /31st of oct, if they ra e released for the friday game we are in for a thrashing as they are going for their 6th rabo straight win, theres 12 Scotland caps there too, how good must that feel to have the bulk of your national side playing for your region, just shows how wrong we are getting it, if they aint released, then with 12 players down Dragons will have a great chance of kick starting their season and putting some pressure on the Blues, team sheet will be interesting.
Not sure whether the Scotland caps are released for the weekend, their training camp was 29th /31st of oct, if they ra e released for the friday game we are in for a thrashing as they are going for their 6th rabo straight win, theres 12 Scotland caps there too, how good must that feel to have the bulk of your national side playing for your region, just shows how wrong we are getting it, if they aint released, then with 12 players down Dragons will have a great chance of kick starting their season and putting some pressure on the Blues, team sheet will be interesting. monkeytennisboy

6:11pm Wed 31 Oct 12

the dork says...

I think someone at the Argus must be trying to get DE to jump ship before he is pushed . We could do what Sale have done to Redpath ie realise he does not have the answer at the momen.t
I think someone at the Argus must be trying to get DE to jump ship before he is pushed . We could do what Sale have done to Redpath ie realise he does not have the answer at the momen.t the dork

8:35pm Wed 31 Oct 12

corpardguy says...

KJ will end up in Cardiff if he comes early, Blues have the cash and are in the same pickle as the dragons coaching wise. However, because they have a deeper, stronger squad they can eke out a few more wins and hold the defensive line for longer in the game.
I wouldn't mind Ruddock, or even Mark Ring, but definitely NOT Lyn Jones.
KJ will end up in Cardiff if he comes early, Blues have the cash and are in the same pickle as the dragons coaching wise. However, because they have a deeper, stronger squad they can eke out a few more wins and hold the defensive line for longer in the game. I wouldn't mind Ruddock, or even Mark Ring, but definitely NOT Lyn Jones. corpardguy

10:58am Thu 1 Nov 12

Regionalist says...

Anyone who wants Kingsley should cast their memory back to the last team he coached's visit to Dave Parade. We need a hard bitten SH coach or nothing.
Anyone who wants Kingsley should cast their memory back to the last team he coached's visit to Dave Parade. We need a hard bitten SH coach or nothing. Regionalist

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