Canberra coach Ricky Stewart has spoken about his close relationship with Alan Jones and how the former Wallabies coach turned broadcaster ended up sitting in the Raiders’ coach box on Friday night.
At the behest of his old coach, Stewart brought Jones into Canberra’s inner sanctum to win the opening magic round at Suncorp Stadium, with the 82-year-old caught on broadcast cameras in the shed in Game 34 , and sat in the box with Stewart -30 over the Bulldogs.
“Ellen texted me yesterday saying he was having lunch here [in Brisbane]said Stewart.
“He said I’d love to come over and support you. I called him and said ‘That’s great, I’ll buy you some company tickets if you want to come along’. He said ‘No, no, no, me and you guys together. He said: ‘I don’t want to work in a company, I’d rather sit at home on a recliner’.”
Stewart’s relationship with Jones dates back 38 years, when Stewart attended a rugby league under-21 camp at the Australian Institute of Sport in Canberra after playing for the Australian boys’ team.
Through Stewart’s former agent, the late John Fordham, Jones has followed the young playmaker’s development.
“He became particularly interested in me in terms of coaching me in football,” Stewart told the masthead.
“Then in 1987, when Nick Farr-Jones had a knee injury, he put me on the Wallabies. A week after the tour, I went as a late call. Since then, he Has been a mentor I can rely on and trust, but more importantly as a partner.