Adam Jones will be welcomed back to the Liberty Stadium on Saturday evening by almost 250 members of his home club, Abercrave RFC.
Invited to the game by the Ospreys to help celebrate Adam’s first home match since signing a new two-year contract last month, the club have responded in big numbers to honour one of their favourite sons.
With dozens of kids from the junior section attending, they will also supply two teams to the half-time tag rugby, the young players following in their hero’s footsteps by playing on the hallowed Liberty Stadium turf.
Adam, who played for Abercrave as a youngster before embarking on a professional rugby career with Neath RFC, has a lounge at the clubhouse named after him and retains close ties with his village team. Speaking ahead of his return to the Liberty, he said:
“I can’t wait to go home to the Liberty after being away with Wales over the last two months. Absence definitely makes the heart grow fonder and I’m really looking forward to pulling on the black shirt again and running out in front of the home fans.
“It’s going to be brilliant to have Abercrave there as well, with so many people I know, family and friends, all there to support the Ospreys and cheer me on. Hopefully we can reward them with a win to help us get a step closer to the play-offs.”
Darryl Williams, Chairman of Abercrave RFC, said:
“Adam Jones has always seen Abercrave RFC as ‘his club’. His father captained Abercrave’s 1st XV in the 1970’s and his mother has always been a loyal supporter. Adam captained the club’s youth XV back in 2000 and is still regularly seen at the club supporting the youngsters on a Sunday morning.
“Everyone associated with Abercrave RFC is extremely proud of Adam and his achievements. Being only one of a handful of players to have achieved three grand slams, he can now truly be classed as a ‘legend of the game’!
“Over 240 Abercrave players and supporters are making the effort to come to the Liberty Stadium on Saturday to watch Adam make his long awaited return to home soil in an Ospreys jersey. The very fact that he has committed his future to the Ospreys proves he is very much a home bird and will never stray far from his home roots of Abercrave.
”Abercrave RFC wishes Adam and the Ospreys the very best of luck for Saturday’s game and for the future.”
Andrew Hore, Chief Operations Officer at the Ospreys, added:
“We are delighted to be able to welcome Abercrave RFC to Saturday night’s game as guests of the region. The club played a huge part in the development of Adam as both a young rugby player and a person, so as we recognise his great service to the region and the fantastic news that he will be an Osprey for at least another two years, it’s only right that we invite his club along to be a part of that.
“We firmly believe that we are a family at the Ospreys, and community clubs across the region are part of that family. The majority of our squad are locally born and bred, and began playing rugby for a community club, before going on to become fully-fledged Ospreys and even internationals. We all share the same cause, so it’s important we celebrate each others achievements in this way.”
Saturday’s crucial RaboDirect PRO12 game against Benetton Treviso kicks off at 6.30pm. All kids can get free entry (up to four with a single paying adult), while season-ticket holders are entitled to a free ticket so that they can bring a mate to the game, which can be collected from the Ticket Office on production of their season-ticket.