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JONES BECOMING MAJOR PART OF FALCONS' SUCCESS

Thursday, June 27, 2013 - 1:12 PM
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JORDAN Jones admittedly had trouble adjusting to life on and off the field in his first season at West Perth in 2012 but he is settled now in both aspects and the Falcons are reaping the rewards with him settling in defence and being one of the star performers so far this season.

Jones spent his first three years as a senior footballer on the West Coast Eagles list where he played two AFL matches and in that time racked up 47 WAFL games with Peel Thunder.
He found himself delisted by the Eagles at the end of 2011 and that left him undecided where to play his football, but more importantly what he wanted to do to make a living.
He tried a host of jobs and West Perth tried him in a number of different roles after he decided to remain in WA to play with the Falcons.
It was a year of adjustment for the soon to be 23-year-old but he has more stability off the field now and his form on the field in 2013 for the Falcons has been tremendous and he has been a major reason why West Perth currently sits in second spot on the ladder.
He has found a regular spot in defence where he is equally capable of playing on small or tall forward from the opposition and he reads the play well, and is outstanding at setting things up coming out of defence. Jones feels it's the position that best suits him as well.
"I've always been a defender and I think I always will be, but I really enjoyed playing in the midfield as well and I thought I'd try to give that a crack but at West Perth we have a lot of young midfielders coming through like Aaron Black and Shane Nelson," Jones said.
"I sorted of got squeezed out of the midfield but the back-line is for me I reckon and I like creating a bit of run from there. I can play on either talls or smalls as well and I'm not too fussed who I play on."
Helping Jones' job in the back-line has been the form of fellow defenders Michael Pettigrew, Dan Hunt, Luke Tedesco, Andrew Strijk, Steven Browne and Laine Rasmussen as well.
"It's a really tight-knit group in our back-line and we are really resilient in trying to stop the opposition from scoring. From where we are, we have the best opportunity to see the whole ground and I reckon we direct and use our voice very well down back," he said.
"We can see the play unfolding and a lot of the guys back there have played a lot of footy now, and can read where it's going and can push over to the right spots to try and create the turnover early."
Jones was drafted by the Eagles from the Geelong Falcons straight out of school so being a professional footballer is basically all he knew.
Then when suddenly that life was snatched away from him, he was happy to stay in WA and play with West Perth but what to do off the field wasn’t as easy to figure out. He is happier with the job he now has though.
"My first year out of West Coast was pretty tough because I didn’t really know what I wanted to do with my life outside of football. I obviously needed to start earning some money. I did all sorts of jobs," he said
"I was a pool cleaner, I washed windows, I was a brickies labourer, I did all sorts. It ended up taking a bit of a toll on my body because I was doing labour intensive jobs where when I was at West Coat for three years when you have your time off you are resting, doing recovery and doing everything right to get your body right for the next training session or the next game.
"It certainly took me a while to adjust to it and during the pre-season I ended up getting a job at BankWest so I'm sitting at a desk all day now and I really think that has helped my football quite a bit because I'm not working all day digging holes or something like that.
"I'm coming to training after sitting down all day and I come to training pumped, and ready to burn some energy. That has really helped me play better footy and I also had a better pre-season, and the form has been starting to show."
Jones certainly did think about returning to Victoria, but he had one major reason to stay in Perth and that was his girlfriend. When he decided to stay, West Perth soon became the best option for him thanks to some friends at the Falcons he'd made.
"I contemplated going back to Melbourne to play in the VFL, but my partner is from WA so that sort of encouraged me to stay a little bit longer here. I love it over here and I don’t really want to move anywhere else. I like living in Perth," he said.
"Once I was a free-agent, I caught up with West Perth and knew quite a lot of the boys like Andrew Strijk and Luke Tedesco prior to actually signing with the club and that was probably the most appealing thing because I had some mates there already.
"West Perth are a very successful club with their history and the year before I signed they made it to the prelim so I was hoping to come to West Perth to try and get a premiership."
Like Jones is having a vastly improved 2013 season, so is the whole West Perth team currently sitting a game and percentage clear in second spot on the ladder.
Jones puts much of that credit down to some increased depth at the club this year but perhaps even more importantly that the coaching staff right through the grades has drilled into the players the same game style.
"The most important thing about our list this year is that everyone knows once they get an opportunity that they have to play their role for their team," Jones said.
"Over the pre-season we really implemented the structure that we are going to use and that it's going to happen with our reserves and league teams, and it's filtering down to our colts as well.
"The whole West Perth footy club is going to play the same way so that makes the transition a little bit easier for a few of the young guys to come in after knocking on the door for a league spot.
"Once they have got their opportunity they know the role that they have to play and that's the important thing. If you get 22 blokes doing that, then you have the best shot at trying to win the game."JORDAN Jones admittedly had trouble adjusting to life on and off the field in his first season at West Perth in 2012 but he is settled now in both aspects and the Falcons are reaping the rewards with him settling in defence and being one of the star performers so far this season.

Jones spent his first three years as a senior footballer on the West Coast Eagles list where he played two AFL matches and in that time racked up 47 WAFL games with Peel Thunder.

He found himself delisted by the Eagles at the end of 2011 and that left him undecided where to play his football, but more importantly what he wanted to do to make a living.

He tried a host of jobs and West Perth tried him in a number of different roles after he decided to remain in WA to play with the Falcons.

It was a year of adjustment for the soon to be 23-year-old but he has more stability off the field now and his form on the field in 2013 for the Falcons has been tremendous and he has been a major reason why West Perth currently sits in second spot on the ladder.

He has found a regular spot in defence where he is equally capable of playing on small or tall forward from the opposition and he reads the play well, and is outstanding at setting things up coming out of defence. Jones feels it's the position that best suits him as well.

"I've always been a defender and I think I always will be, but I really enjoyed playing in the midfield as well and I thought I'd try to give that a crack but at West Perth we have a lot of young midfielders coming through like Aaron Black and Shane Nelson," Jones said.

"I sorted of got squeezed out of the midfield but the back-line is for me I reckon and I like creating a bit of run from there. I can play on either talls or smalls as well and I'm not too fussed who I play on."

Helping Jones' job in the back-line has been the form of fellow defenders Michael Pettigrew, Dan Hunt, Luke Tedesco, Andrew Strijk, Steven Browne and Laine Rasmussen as well.

"It's a really tight-knit group in our back-line and we are really resilient in trying to stop the opposition from scoring. From where we are, we have the best opportunity to see the whole ground and I reckon we direct and use our voice very well down back," he said.

"We can see the play unfolding and a lot of the guys back there have played a lot of footy now, and can read where it's going and can push over to the right spots to try and create the turnover early."

Jones was drafted by the Eagles from the Geelong Falcons straight out of school so being a professional footballer is basically all he knew.

Then when suddenly that life was snatched away from him, he was happy to stay in WA and play with West Perth but what to do off the field wasn’t as easy to figure out. He is happier with the job he now has though.

"My first year out of West Coast was pretty tough because I didn’t really know what I wanted to do with my life outside of football. I obviously needed to start earning some money. I did all sorts of jobs," he said

"I was a pool cleaner, I washed windows, I was a brickies labourer, I did all sorts. It ended up taking a bit of a toll on my body because I was doing labour intensive jobs where when I was at West Coast for three years when you have your time off you are resting, doing recovery and doing everything right to get your body right for the next training session or the next game.

"It certainly took me a while to adjust to it and during the pre-season I ended up getting a job at BankWest so I'm sitting at a desk all day now and I really think that has helped my football quite a bit because I'm not working all day digging holes or something like that.

"I'm coming to training after sitting down all day and I come to training pumped, and ready to burn some energy. That has really helped me play better footy and I also had a better pre-season, and the form has been starting to show."

Jones certainly did think about returning to Victoria, but he had one major reason to stay in Perth and that was his girlfriend. When he decided to stay, West Perth soon became the best option for him thanks to some friends at the Falcons he'd made.

"I contemplated going back to Melbourne to play in the VFL, but my partner is from WA so that sort of encouraged me to stay a little bit longer here. I love it over here and I don’t really want to move anywhere else. I like living in Perth," he said.

"Once I was a free-agent, I caught up with West Perth and knew quite a lot of the boys like Andrew Strijk and Luke Tedesco prior to actually signing with the club and that was probably the most appealing thing because I had some mates there already.

"West Perth are a very successful club with their history and the year before I signed they made it to the prelim so I was hoping to come to West Perth to try and get a premiership."

Like Jones is having a vastly improved 2013 season, so is the whole West Perth team currently sitting a game and percentage clear in second spot on the ladder.

Jones puts much of that credit down to some increased depth at the club this year but perhaps even more importantly that the coaching staff right through the grades has drilled into the players the same game style.

"The most important thing about our list this year is that everyone knows once they get an opportunity that they have to play their role for their team," Jones said.

"Over the pre-season we really implemented the structure that we are going to use and that it's going to happen with our reserves and league teams, and it's filtering down to our colts as well.

"The whole West Perth footy club is going to play the same way so that makes the transition a little bit easier for a few of the young guys to come in after knocking on the door for a league spot.

"Once they have got their opportunity they know the role that they have to play and that's the important thing. If you get 22 blokes doing that, then you have the best shot at trying to win the game."

BY CHRIS PIKE