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Nolli Waterman considered ending media career after abuse

Rugby World Cup winner Danielle Waterman has said cutting back her social media has allowed her to reignite the passion for her punditry career that she once considered ending.

Nolli Waterman considered ending media career after abuse

The 36-year-old became the victim of online abuse following her men's Six Nations commentary debut last October.

But determined not to let trolls 'control the narrative', she was inspired to keep picking up the microphone and will be pitchside this weekend as England go for Women's Six Nations glory against France.

"When I first started commentating, I would look online straight away to see the reaction and go down rabbit holes, getting more upset at what I found," said Waterman.

"You get into that habit as a player. I would not even acknowledge the positive ones; I would be looking for the negatives and it would just spiral.

"It's really difficult to work out the best way of dealing with it. You want to showcase the idiotic comments being made but at the same time, you are giving them a platform.

"I decided to completely stay away from it in the (men's) Six Nations as I didn't need the negative energy.

"It's important not to let it dominate you. Now I enjoy blocking people and I have also seen the positive side of social media in the way I can share my story and engage with people.

"I'm really passionate about making sure the negative side doesn't control the narrative. How on earth is that going to inspire any young people?"

She later added: "Sport is so often dominated by men that becoming a commentator or coach might not even enter a young girl's thought process

"I hate the thought of anyone not seeing people they can relate to in these roles and the more they see these different options because someone that looks like them is doing it, the better."

Waterman won seven Six Nations titles across a 15-year international career.

Author: Jake Wilkin