Thursday 21 September 2017

Video: Six-year-old England mascot Harry Westlake steals the Six Nations with anthem rendition

Luther Burrell, Mike Brown and Chris Robshaw with mascot Harry Westlake
Luther Burrell, Mike Brown and Chris Robshaw with mascot Harry Westlake

Jack de Menezes

Jonathan Joseph may have announced his arrival on the international stage as he score two breath-taking tries in the 47-17 Six Nations victory over Italy, but he was shown up by six-year-old mascot Harry Westlake.

The youngster has been accredited as “the boy who stole the Six Nations” after pictures emerged of him bellowing out the English national anthem just moments before kick-off at Twickenham on Saturday.

Harry revealed that he got to meet his hero Owen Farrell – the England fly-half currently ruled out of the Six Nations through injury – and aspires to play for his country as either a No 10 or a centre because they are “strong and quick”.

He told the Daily Mail: “Those are my favourite players because they're strong and quick.

“I was happy to sing in front of all those people. I was nervous but it was amazing. My favourite player is Owen Farrell and I got to meet him.”

Harry’s father Kevin revealed that the mascot had a great day and said he wasn’t playing up for the moment as that is how he usually sings – and Harry even knows the second and third verses of the God Save The Queen.

“This is my boy,” said Kevin, 36. “He is the most passionate person I know.

“He loves England. He loves rugby. He met his idols - he met Owen Farrell in the stand.

“He sings the national anthem like that regardless of whether he's in a huge stadium or whether he's sat in front of the telly. He even knows the second and third verses.

“We're not overly patriotic as a family, it's just something that he's picked up because of the passion the rugby invokes.

“He's not the best player in the world yet but he tries his hardest, he leads by example and I'm incredibly proud of him.

“I introduced him to rugby in the park when he was three and we went to his first international last year when he was five years old - England against Wales in the Six Nations.”

Not only did Harry quickly become an internet sensation as #doitlikeHarry began trending on Twitter, but England full-back Mike Brown – who was knocked out in the early stages of the game in a sickening collision with Italian centre Andrea Masi – tweeted that he was already a “legend”.

Brown wrote: “Why I love playing rugby for England! How much of a legend is this little man Harry.”

The official England Rugby twitter account added: “The passion etched on Chris Robshaw's face is echoed on the young mascot's below. It means so much to so many.”

Watch the video of the national anthem below...

It’s not the first time that Harry has found himself as the focal point of the England rugby team though, after he met head coach Stuart Lancaster as a thank you present for the RFU using a picture of him on his father’s shoulders at last year’s Six Nations victory over Wales.

“Harry was given VIP access on a one-to-one basis with the entire England squad and management,” said his dad Kevin.

“He was interviewed for a piece on Sky Sports news and England Rugby TV.”

Despite a 400-mile round trip from Plymouth and getting home at 11.30pm, Harry was still on the pitch Sunday morning to play for his local club Devonport Services RFC under-7s against Newton Abbot.

Given all the attention and his passion for rugby, we reckon this isn’t the last time you’ve heard of Harry Westlake.

Independent News Service

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