Jones: I feared for my future
Wales second-rower Alun-Wyn Jones thought his costly sin-binning against England might jeopardise his international career.
Last Updated: 09/02/10 8:57pm
Alun-Wyn Jones admits he has got to "put some wrongs right" after avoiding the humiliation of being dropped from Wales' team.
The second-rower has retained his place in the side to face Scotland on Saturday despite his costly sin-binning for tripping against England.
Jones was yellow-carded for bringing down hooker Dylan Hartley and had to watch on as his side conceded 17 points whilst down to 14 men.
Wales coach Warren Gatland was far from impressed by the player's actions in the 30-17 defeat but has kept faith in the British and Irish Lion, who intends to reward the vote of confidence with a strong display against the Scots.
"It was more of a reaction, probably one of the worst reactions I've had on the rugby pitch," Jones said of the incident.
"At the time I thought it would jeopardise my international career.
"You've got to have that sort of view when you make those mistakes because obviously the opportunities to play are few and far between.
"Shaun Edwards (Wales assistant coach) spoke to me at half-time so I knew the severity of the viewpoint from the management, and rightly so.
"I wasn't aware of it (Gatland's interview) but I had a few texts and I realised Gats was just taking his honest line as usual, and I fully respect him for that.
"When he first came in (as Wales coach) he said he was going to be honest to players, on and off the field. When he first said that to us I thought it was very refreshing for the players.
"I think it's a cut-throat mentality that we haven't had before, if you like, in the rugby fraternity in Wales and I think Gats is just bringing that off-field southern hemisphere cutting edge.
"I've been given this second opportunity now, but I see every game as an opportunity. I have got it this week to obviously put some wrongs right - or a wrong right - from last week."
Jones has had to take plenty of flak for what he describes as "one of the most stupid, idiotic acts I have done".
"Immediately afterwards I had a bit of abuse on a few social networking sides, which is fine," he added.
"People are able to vent and immediately afterwards it's an end of the world situation, apocalypse now, whatever you want to call it.
"Slowly, people change and there is a bit of support out there. It's funny, it takes something like that to realise how much people do think of you.
"I would like to thank everybody who has given me their support, and at the same time thank everyone who has given me abuse because a lot of the time it is the abuse that spurs you more than the people who support you.
"I didn't read any papers until I went to my parents' on Sunday. I had a quick look, then went back to bed.
"People are entitled to their opinion, and my act was completely stupid, but the over-reaction and vilification? It's a bit sad when some people have to do that.
"I wouldn't say it was the lowest point (of my career), but it was one of the most stupid, idiotic acts I have done.
"This opportunity is now there to put it right."
Gatland inists he never considered dropping Jones, who will partner Jonathan Thomas in the second row, and expects the forward to learn from his mistake.
"He is a player who gives 100 per cent and has delivered well for Wales," he said. "He is not a serial offender.
"If it was someone who had picked up lots of yellow cards and given away lots of penalties, then the sanction might have been to drop him because you needed to make that decision.
"There was no discussion from us in terms of dropping him. We all felt he'd made a stupid error and he is an intelligent enough person that he is remorseful and he will learn from it."