Scotland and Edinburgh Rugby winger Lee Jones has capped a breakthrough season with an extended deal that will keep him at the Murrayfield club until 2014.
As one of the season’s stand-out performers, the young Borderer has shown an extraordinary strength and guile as a line-breaking, try-scoring winger, running in five scores in 16 appearances so far this season, two of which bookended the club’s historic pool campaign in the Heineken Cup.
Jones kick-started the club’s fight-back away against London Irish in round one and the last secured the all-important bonus-point against the same opposition at Murrayfield in round six to earn home advantage in the quarter-final against Toulouse on Easter weekend (Saturday 7 April).
As a player who has shown consistent improvements since turning professional in 2009, Jones was rewarded with selection in Scotland’s 2012 RBS 6 Nations squad, making his debut against England at Murrayfield before being reselected for the second Test against Wales.
Edinburgh Rugby head coach Michael Bradley said: “Lee [Jones] has grasped all the opportunities presented to him improve and perform.
“His performances have undoubtedly lifted the team on a number of occasions and he has an exceptional engine which always helps him to hunt out scores from the opposite wing.
“Some of his highlights would certainly be his covering defensive work and an incredible strength in the contact area that regularly takes teams by surprise. Few can afford to give him a glimpse of a gap or he’ll be away.
“His work rate is exceptional and he's a great professional. He brings great energy to squad and we’re delighted to have such a committed player extend his time at the club.”
Jones first signed for Edinburgh Rugby in 2009 after some stirring performances for former club Selkirk.
Just a season after signing straight from Scotland’s domestic divisions, the Heriot-Watt graduate was excelling in the 2010 Commonwealth Games and in the HSBC Sevens World Series, before coming into his own in his second season at the capital club.
Jones said: “I’m absolutely delighted to have secured an extended contract.
“In my first year as a professional player (2010/11) I had to adjust to the daily intensity in training and the speed and physicality of the matches but, a season on, I’ve adapted to those demands and am now happy that I’m bringing a consistency to my performances for the club.
“I’ve never stopped improving as a player and I don’t plan to now. Everything I do is geared towards being a better professional and better player and, with of lot of key players signing on and some impressive new names joining the squad, I’m really happy to have secured a place as part of a bright future at Edinburgh Rugby.
“The last couple of seasons have been incredible. It really is a dream come true to play professional rugby for club and country.”