AG Signs Australian Backrower Maclean Jones
AUSTIN, TX (December 15, 2020) Austin Gilgronis is proud to announce the signing of battle-tested Australian back-rower, Maclean Jones. Jones brings a high motor and blue-collar work ethic to the AGs this January.
Jones is an impressive defender with an impeccable work rate. Jones first burst on the scene in 2015 when he led the National Rugby Championship (NRC) in tackles per game average (18.4) at just 19 years old. Jones’ leadership earned him a captaincy role in the Australian U20s and Warringah Rats Schute Shield squads in the last five years.
AGs head coach Sam Harris knows Maclean Jones brings more than just defensive prowess. “Attack wise Maclean is an excellent link forward who carries like a back, defensively – I think his tape speaks for itself,” says Harris. “He’s a serious on-baller and ‘Mac’ will possibly be the leader of our stacked back row group; he leads with his actions, not his words.”
The AG Backrow: Maclean Jones, Dom Bailey, Michael de Waal, Dom Akina, Moe Abdelmonem, Cameron Dodson.
Career & Connections
Jones most recently played for the Waratahs in Super Rugby on the professional level and for the Warringah Rats at the club level. Jones captained Warringah under AGs assistant coach and Wallabies legend, Mark Gerrard, and won Warringah’s second-ever Schute Shield final in 2017.
“I get along quite well with Mark Gerrard, he was my first-grade coach in Sydney last year and I was the captain, so we had a pretty good relationship,” says Maclean Jones. “So as [Mark] was making the transition he pinpointed me as a potential signing. I think [Mark] always saw I was good enough to do it and was always in my ear to stay on top of things and wait for my opportunity,” says Jones. “When it came around he was there to give me [an opportunity], which I’m thankful for.”
Maclean Jones lives down the road from AGs head coach Sam Harris, and the two had an opportunity to connect over a coffee post lockdown. “Maclean is a game-breaker, he comes from the same club in Sydney (Warringah) that both Mark and myself played and coached for,” says Coach Harris. “He is massively underrated and underappreciated and the AGs will happily benefit from Australia’s loss.”
To further the Australian connection in the 2021 AGs team, Maclean Jones and recently announced AG signee Mack Mason has been rugby teammates since they were 15 years old. Jones and Mason starred on the Australian U20s squad for two years together including a trip to the U20s World Championships in 2017. In 2016, Maclean Jones captained the U20s squad to a historic win over the All Blacks U20s squad; the match-winning kick was converted by none other than Mack Mason.
Jones follows American professional sport religiously and has been thoroughly interested in Major League Rugby since 2018. “The MLR has alot of momentum, the Americas are a massive market, the media coverage is certainly catching eyes this side, and the footy is getting a lot better.”
Maclean Jones is thrilled to get stateside and hyped about living in Austin. He’s been following the AGs closely, even watching all five AG matches on Facebook Live last season. “I’ve been following the AGs and MLR for a while now – I’m a huge fan of the classic American sports too,” Jones boasts a Red Sox baseball cap. “Yea the AG orange is like classic Texas, and there’s nothing more American than playing at a racetrack,” Jones laughs.
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