Tighthead Jones, 31, returned to first-team action in the Ospreys’ 17-6 Heineken Cup win over Toulouse on Saturday after two months out with a knee injury.
And his return is a timely boost after Wales endured a miserable autumn, during which they lost to Argentina, Samoa, world champions New Zealand and Australia.
Their poor form has been compounded by a lengthy injury list, with Dan Lydiate, Rhys Priestland, Alun Wyn Jones and Aaron Jarvis set to miss some if not all of the 2013 RBS 6 Nations.
And despite further injury concerns ahead of their opener against Ireland on 2 February, Jones believes they will be at their best when it comes to defending their title – even if they will be without Warren Gatland.
“It was tough to miss the autumn series because you know what it’s like in camp – the build-up is always exciting,” said Jones, who has picked up 83 Welsh caps.
“It was probably a good series to miss the way it turned out, but I don’t think we’ve turned into a poor team overnight.
“There is a lot of talent in the squad. If we can get everyone fit, we can give anyone in the Six Nations a run for their money.
“A lot has been made about Warren Gatland being away on Lions duty but the coaches there are fantastic anyway.
“Of course Gats is a big influence, but I don’t see why we can’t retain our title. It’s obviously going to be difficult, but I don’t see why not.”
© Sportsbeat 2012
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