Adam Hastings has revealed he deleted Twitter to protect himself from the fallout after Finn Russell was axed from the Scotland squad ahead of the start of the 2020 Guinness Six Nations. With Russell cast aside following a team hotel disagreement with coach Gregor Townsend, the path was cleared for 23-year-old Hastings to start his first-ever match in the championship.
Mindful that he had been distracted by social media commentary previously in his burgeoning career, Hastings took the drastic action of removing himself from social media for a few weeks before coming back online after the Six Nations had started.
Appearing on All Access, the RugbyPass interview series hosted by ex-Scotland international Jim Hamilton, Hastings said: “Look, I found out maybe two weeks before the Ireland game or when it obviously happened that was going to be the case, Gregor kind of said to be I would be starting.
“I had a bit of time to think about it before everyone else knew which was good. Maybe before the Ireland game, I felt a bit of pressure because it was all the media were talking about.
“In camp, it wasn’t as big a deal. It was just dealt with in the first couple of days and boys had to move on and just focus on the game. For me personally, I just deleted Twitter and things like that because you get a few armchair critics coming at you. I just tried to stay away from that.
“Maybe the biggest thing was I’d almost gone through that a tiny bit when Finn left for Racing and it was that big question mark of who is going to fill this role here (at Glasgow). I suppose I had a tiny bit of that.
“Before the Ireland game I maybe felt a bit more pressure than usual but after that, things settled down a bit and that was it and I relaxed,” he said, looking back on a championship where he started four games on the bounce before the final round postponement versus Wales.
“I had done it [deleted Twitter] a couple of times before during my career where I kind of had a dip in form in my breakthrough year and I was taking a bit of a hammering. I was a young lad and you tend to read all these things.
“I just didn’t want to put myself in that boat again because it can be a bit toxic and it was just a bit of a downward spiral. When you just start reading everything it’s not the nine good comments you remember, it’s the one bad one.
“I just wanted to get away from it all but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t read a bit a couple of weeks later to see what was going on.”
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