Scott Jones is one of the most recognisable players in the WA Smarter Than Smoking Premiership.
The 2017 Ken Allen Medal winner is a leader on the field for the South Perth Lions and was recently awarded a framed photo of himself by NRL WA Chief Executive, John Sackson to recognise his commitment to our game.
“It’s a huge honour,” Jones said.
“Not only to be awarded with the Ken Allen Award last season, but to receive this framed photo as well was something I didn’t see coming, but I’m very grateful to the NRL WA for that.”
The former New Zealand Maori led the Lions with 40 goals and four tries last season and has again been on top form in 2018 with 12 goals and three tries.
Jones is in his twentieth year of playing rugby league, having made the switch over from netball in 1999.
“Before I played rugby league I played netball, funnily enough,” he said.
“I wanted to be competitive and wanted to do well. I set very high standards on myself personally – it got me ahead of where I wanted to be.”
Rugby league isn’t the be-all and end-all in Jones’ life, however.
The 29-year-old works as a youth worker alongside NRL WA Chaplain and South Perth teammate, Karl Harding, helping at-risk youths deal with domestic violence, drug and alcohol abuse and homelessness.
Jones says his relationship with Karl is crucial in his performances both on and off the field.
“When I first started working with Karl we were at different clubs – he was at Fremantle and I was at South Perth. It was just by chance that he came over to South Perth,” he said.
“We always had a very good relationship anyway, but when he came over it really grew from strength to strength.
“We talk about rugby league at work and at rugby league we speak about work. It’s important for me to have a relationship like that with Karl.”
Above all, the forward says he tries to give back to the game as much as possible.
“I do try and offer my time to people who inspire to get to greater levels in rugby league. I always try to be a positive influence on people – I’ll forever be in debt to the sport,” he said.