PONTYPOOL, South Wales, 13th November 2016 – Pontypool RFC is pleased to announce that Leighton Jones has signed a contract extension that will keep him at Pontypool Park as the club’s head coach until 2019.
A twenty-year veteran of Pontypool RFC as a player, captain, forwards coach and now head coach, Jones has excelled in overseeing the club achieve a 100% winning record and establish a 9-point lead at the top of the WRU National Championship table so far this season.
“It has been an immense honour to represent Pontypool RFC as its head coach and to have the opportunity to continue on this journey for an additional two seasons fills both me and my family with enormous pride,” said Jones.
“I am pleased with the progress we have made in recent months and the incredible contributions made by our management, squad and volunteers means that we have a positive and united environment that will enable us to grow even further in the seasons to come.
The enthusiasm flowing around Pontypool Park is also beginning to extend further afield, with Jones strengthening relationships with the neighbouring community to ensure a more united and sustainable future is generated for Torfaen rugby.
“We have not taken our eyes off the key objective to take Pontypool RFC back to the Principality Premiership division, but this extended period of time in the National Championship has allowed us to take stock of the positive influence the club can have in building a true rugby community within Torfaen,” continued Jones.
“Pontypool RFC is now taking a leading role in working with our neighbouring clubs to develop the future stars of Torfaen rugby, as well as creating a network of coaches to constantly build on our already sound rugby structures and strategies.
“This demonstrates that missing out on promotion to the Principality Premiership was the start of a new beginning for this club, so that when we are presented with the opportunity in the future, we will be better prepared than ever to compete for honours with the invaluable support of the Torfaen rugby community.”
The advancement of Pooler’s rugby and community operations signalled to Pontypool RFC chief executive officer, Ben Jeffreys, that it was vital to ensure Jones remained at the helm to lead the club’s quest to return to the Principality Premiership in 2019.
On the continued partnership, he said: “It is an absolute delight to have secured the long-term services of Leighton, who is absolutely the figurehead the club needs to drive it forward into a successful and sustainable future.
“The disappointment of narrowly failing to achieve promotion to the Principality Premiership division last season has been the ultimate learning tool for us and has presented an opportunity for the club to take the appropriate amount of time to establish the structures needed to be truly successful, both on-and-off the pitch.
“Leighton’s efforts to implement community-focused frameworks has resulted in the club further strengthening its relationships with the Torfaen rugby community and it is great to see so many new faces at Pontypool Park supporting the club this season.
“We are entering an exceptionally exciting period in the history of Torfaen rugby and I am thoroughly looking forward to continuing this strong partnership into what I am sure will be a vibrant future for this great rugby club.”