No Longer A Fraud

Sunday, 23 March 2008, 7:32
2 mins read

The Welsh midfielder has made two substitute appearances in the last week as well as being named in John Toshack's Welsh side for next week's international and that has finally – we hope – put to bed a terrible period for him where he has spent much of the last 27 months out with injury.

Case your minds back to New Years Eve 2005 and Swansea were top of League One and looking destined for the Championship.   A 0-0 draw at Swindon was marred by an injury to Lee Trundle but also Tudur Jones as the Swans started the wobble that eventually saw them lose the play off final.   Endless consultantations, operations and recovery plans later and Tudur Jones returns with the Swans top of League One and looking destined for the Championship.   Hardly time standing still but it has been a long haul for the man that Kenny Jackett bought to Swansea in the summer of 2005.

And now it all seems behind him he opens his mind in today's Wales on Sunday to just how bad he felt at times during the injury lay off.  “It’s difficult to look on from outside the game because people must think: ‘He’s getting paid, why is it such a problem?’

“But it is a horrible feeling not to be able to do anything to contribute to the team.

“When you see the side doing well you’re obviously happy for them, but when they’re being so successful on the field you just don’t feel a part of it.A new manager has come in since I’ve been out and you wonder where you stand in his plans. All these things play on your mind.

“And there’s nothing you can do about it because you’re stuck in the gym and can’t get out on the pitch.

“You train and train, but footballers are more or less paid for what they do on Saturday, so you feel a little worthless.

“The last couple of weeks I’ve been back in training, but I always felt I needed to step out on to the football field in order for me to believe I’m back.

“To actually do it was really important because I’ve been close a couple of times but then suffered a setback. Actually getting out there was a real landmark for me.”

"From a personal point of view, it’s important I get as many minutes to my name before the end of the season in preparation for me to be playing some really good football next year.

“But in all honesty, it’s just nice to be talking about football again rather than my injury.”

That’s little surprise given the length of time Jones has been seen around the Liberty Stadium, just nowhere near the pitch.

“What’s frustrating is that you’ve got to deal with your injury all the time,” he said.

“People are so nice and friendly to you about it but it’s always a reminder. I was fed up with the questions about it and I think people were fed up of hearing me talk about it.

“My girlfriend was definitely fed up with me coming home miserable in the worst of it, I think everyone was.

“My parents were a huge support, but they’d speak to me every day and ask me how it was.

“I’d try not to be short with them, but I was because it’s the last thing you want to talk about.

“That’s not fair to them but it’s a tough time and that’s how you react.

“Then when you get setbacks it’s a battle against yourself. You’ve got to forget about getting back in the team and doing the day-by-day things.

“You think it’s always the honest lads who get these long-term injuries.

“You have to keep telling yourself your luck’s going to change sometime, just keep going.

“But now this is the time for me to get going again.”

Images courtesy of Getty Images, Athena Picture Agency and Swansea City Football Club.
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