Alun Wyn Jones reveals his five toughest second-row opponents - Ruck

Alun Wyn Jones reveals his five toughest second-row opponents

Alun Wyn Jones doesn’t not often praise his opposition second-rowers so when he does it’s pretty interesting – with one current England star making his list.


#5. Justin Harrison

  • Born April 20, 1974, Sydney, NSW
  • Major teams Australia A, Barbarians, Bath Rugby, Brumbies, New South Wales Waratahs, Ulster, Australia
  • Caps 34
  • Position Lock
Embed from Getty Images

Harrison, who has a fierce feud with former England international Austin Healey, was almost better known for his larger than life personality than his rugby. A veteran of the 2003 Rugby World Cup, he spent the later years of his career with Ulster and Bath.

Jones said: “Away from the physical side, banter-wise it would have to be Aussie lock Justin Harrison. He was interesting to play against to say the least.”

Did you know? He is currently the head of the Australian Rugby Union Players Association (RUPA)


#4. Maro Itoje

  • Born October 28, 1994, Camden
  • Major teams British and Irish Lions, England Saxons, England Under-20s, Saracens, England
  • Caps 55
  • Position Lock

Jones already knew about the 22-year-old’s more obvious talents, the two of them have knocked heads often enough, but Jones has learned a lot more about “the leadership qualities Maro’s got” during the 2017 & 2021 Lions tours.

Jones said: “From the outside, you can see he is a physical specimen, but there are also the leadership qualities he has got. He’s a class act and one of the best I’ve seen,”

Final whistle celebrations for Maro Itoje of England Rugby after the Six Nations Championship match between England and Wales at Twickenham Stadium, Twickenham, London on February 26th 2021. – PHOTO: Phil Mingo/PPAUK

#3. Eben Etzebeth

  • Born October 29, 1991, Cape Town
  • Major teams Stormers, Toulon, Western Province, South Africa
  • Caps 95
  • Position Lock
Eben Etzebeth of South Africa during the Autumn Nations Match between England and South Africa at Twickenham Stadium on 20 November 2021. Photo: Tom Sandberg/PPAUK