Jones rejoined Glasgow in the summer after a season with Harlequins but injured his back in his final match for Quins in the Premiership semi-final defeat by Saracens in June. It forced him to miss Scotland’s summer tour of South America and he suffered a setback in September which further delayed his return.
He is now back in full training and vying for a place in the squad for the Pool A match at the Rec on Saturday. Stafford McDowall and Sione Tuipulotu filled the centre roles in last weekend’s 45-17 win over Zebre and Sam Johnson is also making good progress from a broken jaw so there is plenty of competition for places, according to Nigel Carolan, the Warriors assistant coach.
“Huw Jones is just coming back from injury and is training the house down,” said Carolan. “Sammy Johnson is coming back from injury, you’ve Sione, you’ve Stafford who through opportunity is playing really well. So there’s real competition there but we’re going to need that if we’re going to compete.
“It’s about managing our squad. Sione Tuipulotu, who was involved in all of the [Scotland] games during the autumn, we need to manage his time as well. Sam Johnson is close to returning as well. Huw is there or thereabouts. Tom Jordan can also slot in there at centre. But Huw is pretty close and is looking good for the weekend.”
Jones, 28, who can also play at full-back, would offer a fresh attacking option for Glasgow as they look to build on the Zebre result which was their first league win on the road since January. Bath lie fourth bottom of the Premiership and lost at home to Harlequins last Friday but Carolan has detected a great durability in their performances recently as they have moved away from their traditional adventurous style in favour of a more pragmatic approach.
“At the start of the season, Bath have had a pretty slow start,” said the Glasgow coach. “They were playing a bit more of the Bath way but it wasn’t quite working for them. If you watch their recent performances, they are playing a lot more conservative and without the ball. They are very physical but have a really strong set-piece. They are not bad in defence but they tend to kick a lot now. It’s like the South Africa way of playing.
“It’s a real contrast in styles. It’s a home game for them, the first in the competition, so I’d say they will dip their toe into it. If things don’t go their way after a couple of games, I could see a bit of rotation but I think they will go all guns for this first game.”
We don’t fear going to Bath. It will be a real contrast in styles. We like to play fast and they are a team that, statistically, plays one of the slowest games in the Premiership. They rely a lot on playing without the ball and putting pressure on you in the aerial side of the game. It will be a different battle.”