Ollie Hassell-Collins relishes Six Nations opportunity after receiving England call-up by head coach Eddie Jones
Ollie Hassell-Collins has explained how much experience he’ll gain over the next six weeks as he steps up preparations for the Six Nations with England.
The 23-year-old is one of six uncapped players to be called up to the squad by head coach Eddie Jones and he has linked up with the squad for a five-day training camp in Brighton.
Hassell-Collins was rewarded with a place in the team after another impressive start to the season for London Irish.
“I still can’t describe the feeling, I am so proud but there is still a lot of work for me to do to get into that matchday 23 squad,” said the winger.
“Everyone is very proud and happy with what has happened and they really want to see me kick on now.”
Coming together with some of the biggest names in the sport, Hassell-Collins believes he can use these next few weeks to learn more about his own game.
“Being in that environment is huge because there is some big names in there and it will be cool to see what I can learn from them.
“I can see what these players and coaches think I can improve on and it’s important I learn as much as I can so I can take it back to Irish.
“I am still quite young and there is so much more for me to improve on, so that’s something I will focus on when I go into the squad.”
It’s not the first time that the former St Bartholomew pupil has represented his country.
Hassell-Collins was part of the training squad prior to the 2021 summer internationals and he played a role during the under-20 Six Nations Championship in 2019.
“I got a taste of it in the summer, with what they expect and the standards they want,” said Hassell-Collins. “I can take that experience and then also what I gained with the under-20s.
“It is a busy few weeks, so I want to stay fit and train hard and get the best out of myself and the other players too.”
Hassell-Collins is the only London Irish player in the squad and he has praised the work his club have been doing recently.
“It is a credit to what we have built over the last few years,” he said. “Everything feels like it’s starting to click and Kyle Rowe and Ben White [both Scotland] have been called up, which is awesome.
“It shows what we’re building at Irish and I am excited to get going in the Premiership to see where we go with this group.”