Adam Hastings reveals he received message from Finn Russell before Irish clash

“I might download it again tonight and have a wee read,” said Adam Hastings with a smile after revealing that he had deactivated his Twitter account in the lead up to the biggest day of his career to date as the stand-off made his first Six Nations start in place of the banished Finn Russell.

Adam Hastings is stopped by two Ireland forwards. Picture: Niall Carson/PA Wire

The 23-year-old Hastings, who revealed he had received a good-luck message from Russell on the eve of the game, explained: “I’ve deleted my account a couple of times before. I did it before the [Guinness Pro14] final at Celtic Park [last year] and I did it this week. I thought it would all kick-off just after the whole thing with Finn so I took myself away from that.

“Maybe when I was younger I would have been into it and read it and allowed it to get into my head so I’ve stayed off it. There is always a focus on the ten so there was nothing which was new. It was more the twitter and keyboard warriors coming out and labelling you.

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“I just came off so I didn’t read any of it so it was fine.”

On the message from Russell, Hastings said: “Finn is a class bloke. He’s been brilliant with me ever since I arrived at Glasgow a few years ago.

“He’s been a good friend ever since. It was really nice of him to text me and it helped make me feel comfortable.

“He’s fully Scottish and he wanted to play for Scotland which he has and has done very well. He was wishing us all the best so there is no bad blood at all.”

That’s not to say Hastings wants to hand that No 10 jersey back. He could get used to this, you suspect.

Boasting composure beyond his years, a confidence to cut loose when it’s on and a fine boot from both hand and tee, plus an ability to play centre too, whatever happens with Russell a long Scotland career lies ahead for Hastings. “Anyone who plays rugby wants to start. So to be given the opportunity would be amazing but we will see,” he said.

“I felt I kicked my goals well apart from the one I missed. I was disappointed with that.

“In the first ten minutes I felt I could come on to the ball and pick defenders off. In the second half it was a bit frustrating as I wanted my hands on the ball a bit more. I thought we stayed in the game very well, they were kicking goals instead of going for tries. We were really unlucky with Hoggy in the corner and that could have been a momentum shift.

“He’s such a competitive player so he’s disappointed with that. It’s a chance gone but he’s probably due one after all the moments of 
brilliance he’s produced over the years so we will let 
him off.”

Hastings now hopes to get a chance to carry on the proud Calcutta Cup tradition set by his dad Gavin and uncle Scott. “It would make my whole family proud and myself proud. From a selfish stance I just want to play,” he said. “My dad was over for this game with my mum. I spoke to them at the hotel last night and they were a little bit p***ed.”

Hastings’ performance on Saturday received glowing praise from Ireland legend Brian O’Driscoll. “He’s a rugby legend and has countless Ireland caps and points as well as several Lions tours. So that’s very pleasing to hear,” said Hastings.