Mark Jones is a legend of the Broadview Football Club; 176 games, premiership player, captain, best and fairest, goal kicker and state representative.
Along with his impressive SAAFL resume, Mark Jones also managed over 50 league games and 100 goals for Norwood and Central District – a great South Australian footballer.
Jones’ career started at Broadview where he played in the junior program from the first time he picked up a football.
Jones was an exceptional player in his late teenage years; on the senior list at Norwood for the 1991-1993 seasons and managing 32 league games before he was 19.
Jones was a speedy forward flanker and a goal kicker for the entirety of his career; he managed 76 goals in a little over two seasons at Norwood, winning the 1992 goal kicking award with 62 goals.
Everything was going just nicely for Jones with his football career; he had an exceptional SANFL record for an 18-year-old, and AFL scouters were aware of his talent.
However, his SANFL and AFL careers were cut short before they could begin, after Jones broke his leg early in the 1993 season, forcing him to sit on the sidelines for 12 months.
Unfortunately for the 18-year-old Jones, this horrific injury could not have come at a worse time in his career.
“I was drafted to Richmond at the time, so that held up that process for a bit, which was disappointing,” Jones said.
“I never made it out to Richmond, they were chasing me for a good few years, but I wanted to stay in Adelaide.”
Jones spent the rest of the 1993 season on the sidelines before making his way back home to Broadview where his father is a life member.
He went on to play 11 of his next 12 seasons at Broadview in the division one competition.
“It was an exceptionally strong competition back then, and we had a really talented team,” he said.
Jones himself contributed to that, he was a very handy inclusion for Broadview in the 1990s and early 2000s, kicking well over 500 goals in his career.
He won the 2003 best and fairest for the Tigers, and the highest goal scorer in 10 of the 11 years he spent at the club.
With the talent that they had on their list, Jones was unlucky to only play in one premiership in his tenure at Broadview.
After playing in three losing grand finals, the 2004 premiership win over Goodwood Saints was one to remember for Jones and the club.
“Besides the kids being born, that was one of the greatest days of my life,” he said.
Jones had a lot of great memories on the football field, and played with and against some fantastic players.
“Nathan Buckley was the best player I have played against, but in the SAAFL Gary McIntosh really stood out for me,” he said.
“But my dad has been a great supporter of mine, and it was so special to share my career at Broadview with him.”
In 1998, Jones decided to give his SANFL career one more effort, playing the season with Central District as a 24 year old.
“We moved out to the area, and because I broke my leg at Norwood I missed 12 months of football, I thought I would have another crack at league football,” Jones said.
Even though he only spent the one year on the list, he managed 20 games and won the club goal kicking with 26 goals.
Jones finished his career in 2005 where it started, at Broadview and after winning the premiership in 2004, there was not much more he could ask for.
“It was the first premiership that I had ever won, and I was quite content after that, it was a great feeling of relief,” he said.
Looking back on his career, Jones absolutely cherished the football career he had at three great clubs.
“Growing up as a Norwood supporter, my debut for the Redlegs was a very special moment for me,” he said.
“And I was extremely happy to play my career at Broadview, my dad was there and I absolutely loved it.”
When looking over his professional career, Jones admitted he did have some regret that he didn’t have a true crack at playing AFL football.
“I do have some regret now that I didn’t give my AFL career a good shake, I was a bit young and silly, but I was extremely happy with my football career,” he said.
Besides playing AFL, Jones finished as premiership player at Broadview, with over 200 games at three great clubs, and a catalogue of personal accolades that champions would admire.
After finishing his playing career in 2005 at the age of 32, he stepped away from the club and football all together.
He decided to spend time with his family, and taking a break from football, which consumed his life for so long would allow him to fulfil this.
Now as a 42-year-old has re-entered the football world as the next generation of Jones takes his first steps at Broadview.
Congratulations Mark Jones, Welcome to the SA Footballer Magazine Hall of Fame – a true legend of the SAAFL.
Written by Josh Teakle