Hard as (painted) nails! New England rugby wing Ollie Hassell-Collins paints his nails with the St George’s Cross for the Six Nations kick-off against Scotland… now for a polished performance at Twickenham!
- England wing Ollie Hassell-Collins has painted his fingernails ahead of his debut
- Hassell-Collins will finally earn a Test chance against Scotland in the Six Nations
- His painted fingernails were pictured at England’s captain’s run training session
New England wing Ollie Hassell-Collins has prepared for an international debut in unusual fashion by painting his fingernails for the crunch Calcutta Cup clash with Scotland at Twickenham.
Hassell-Collins has been one of English rugby’s form players for the past two seasons and will finally earn a Test chance when the Six Nations kicks off on Saturday.
London Irish’s Hassell-Collins was pictured at England’s captain’s run training session on the eve of the Scotland game with some of his fingernails painted red and others with the Saint George’s flag on them.
It was certainly an unusual sight for a Test rugby player, but those who know Hassell-Collins won’t be surprised by his latest maverick stunt.
The eccentric 24-year-old is a huge Harry Potter fan and even has a Golden Snitch tattooed on his arm as part of several pieces of body art.
England wing Ollie Hassell-Collins has prepared for his Test debut by painting his fingernails
Hassell-Collins was pictured at England’s captain’s run training session with some of his fingernails painted red and others with the Saint George’s flag on them
Hassell-Collins is also well known for taking his three cats — Betsy, Albus and Marmalade — on walks with partner Eloise and for his love of fashion and jewellery.
‘My nails… I don’t know, it’s kind of this season,’ Hassell-Collins told England Rugby’s Instagram page.
‘I wear quite a lot of jewellery and obviously I can’t wear jewellery in games so I suppose it’s like my permanent jewellery.
‘Also, I used to bite my nails so I was painting them clear. I decided to jazz them up a little bit.
‘They’re usually white and green for Irish but obviously red and white for England.’
Hassell-Collins had earlier told Sportsmail of his England dream ahead of graduating to international rugby.
‘I’m definitely confident I can make the step up, 100 per cent,’ he said.
He will finally earn a Test chance when the Six Nations kicks off on Saturday against Scotland
‘An England debut would be massive. I don’t know how to put it into words. You dream of that moment for a long time.‘
‘One of the things I wanted to do this season was perform at that high level consistently.
That’s come with confidence, but also age. I took a bit longer to mature than others.
‘Now I understand how important that is.’ Hassell-Collins starts on England’s left wing against Scotland.
Sportsmail columnist Sir Clive Woodward is a big fan of his after watching him perform consistently for Irish.
‘The boys have been really welcoming and so easy to talk to,’ Hassell-Collins told England Rugby.
‘It’s one of the highest levels you can get to in rugby and it’s something I’ve dreamed about for a long time.
‘It’s very nerve-wracking coming in and you’ve got players who have been here for a long time that have some achieved some big things in rugby.
‘It’s very inspiring to train with those guys. It’s about going out there with confidence.’