RIP Danny Jones

Wales Rugby League have sent their condolences to the friends and family of their international half-back Danny Jones, who has sadly died aged 29 after suffering a suspected cardiac arrest when playing for his club Keighley Cougars against London Skolars.

Jones collapsed after being replaced early in the match and was treated by the match doctor and paramedics at the ground before being taken to the Royal Free Hospital. Despite extensive efforts to resuscitate him, Jones passed away at the hospital.

The match was eventually abandoned on 15 minutes.

Halifax-born, Jones played for both his hometown club and Keighley Cougars in a 12-year professional career.

He won 12 caps for Wales, making his debut against Italy in Wrexham in 2010 and was an instrumental player in Wales’ European Championship Final win against France that year – a win that game Wales qualification for the 2011 Four Nations, where, like the year before, he played in every Wales game.

His final game for Wales was in the 2013 Rugby League World Cup, against Cook Islands in Neath.

Wales Rugby League chairman Brian Juliff said: “Everyone at Wales Rugby League is very shocked to hear of Danny’s sudden passing. Our condolences go out to his family, friends and colleagues at this sad time.”

A club statement from Keighley Cougars reads:

“Danny was much loved and highly respected by all at the club and in rugby league. He was the life and soul in the dressing room, a natural leader, a true professional and irreplaceable. He achieved over 1000 points and 150 appearances for Keighley Cougars and he will be sorely missed. We are devastated.

“He sadly passed away today at the age of 29 leaving his five month old twins, wife and family. Our hearts go out to Liz, his children and his family.

“Please respect that his family will wish to be allowed to deal with the passing of Danny in private at this difficult time. The club will further inform fans and supporters of any further information as and when we are in a position to do so.”

RFL Chief Operating Officer Ralph Rimmer stated: “It is always devastating when someone so young dies in these circumstances. Danny was a popular and talented Rugby League player, having played at the highest level with the Wales National team and playing over 12 seasons for Keighley Cougars and Halifax.

“The Rugby League community will mourn his loss and I wish to extend our deepest sympathies to Danny’s family and friends at this incredibly sad time. The family, friends and team mates of Danny are currently and will continue to be supported by the RFL Benevolent Fund and Sporting Chance.

“We would ask that the privacy of the Jones family, players and Keighley Cougars staff be respected.”