Jones urges Wales to kick on
Published 18/03/2013 | 18:16
Adam Jones reflected on the most complete performance of his Test career, and demanded Wales take the next step of beating the best teams in the world.
Tighthead prop Jones laid down a huge marker in terms of Lions selection as part of a Wales front row which obliterated their English opponents in Saturday's RBS 6 Nations title-clinching 30-3 win at a jubilant Millennium Stadium.
But Welsh superiority was not limited to the scrum as England were comprehensively outplayed and subsided to a record defeat in the fixture. "I think it was the most complete Wales performance of my career," Jones said.
Jones, 32, has enjoyed some special days during his 88-cap Wales career, being one of a select group of players to have won three Grand Slams prior to securing this year's championship. But he ranks the demolition of the Grand Slam-chasing Red Rose as the finest he has played a part in.
Jones added: "We knew how they would approach the game. We wore them down in that first half and in the second half our quality players told. It was the best performance I have been a part of and it was made even more special by the atmosphere in the stadium, which was just incredible."
Despite now having four Six Nations titles in nine years to their name, Wales have never been able to take the next step and beat the southern hemisphere giants of New Zealand, South Africa and Australia on a regular basis.
Wales' most recent win against any of the world's top three sides came way back in 2008, with a victory over the Wallabies in Cardiff. But the mix of brutal intensity and clarity of purpose shown against England suggests this time Wales have the ability to beat those sides.
And Jones believes it is vital Wales back up the quality of their Cardiff performance when they next meet the All Blacks, Springboks and Wallabies.
"People have said it before, when we have won Grand Slams we have always made a mess of the next year," he said. "We have never really kicked on. We have come first and then finished fourth the next year.
"But this year we have backed it up a bit by retaining the title, so it is a case of keeping it going. Jamie Roberts said there is more to come attack-wise, which is obvious and we have to kick on now. We have a lot of young boys coming in to join the core of experienced players and it is looking good for the future."