It was logical for Holly to be hooked on the game by the age of five. Her father Ian, a former England U20 and Saxons player, was Waterloo’s director of rugby. She said: “I used to watch every first-team game and training session at Blundellsands as was a mascot at matches as well.”
Much has happened since then for Southport-born Holly, who lives in Formby, Liverpool and is studying for a BTEC in Sports Performance and a BA (Hons) in Sports Business at Hartpury College in Gloucestershire. Before joining Lichfield and making her Premiership debut against Saracens in September 2015, she had played for Liverpool St Helens and West Park in addition to Waterloo.
Her versatility allows her to figure at fly half and centre. A talented sevens player, she made her World Series debut in Las Vegas in March 2017, scored a try in the Challenge Trophy semi-final against Argentina and also appeared in the Kitakyushu tournament the following month. She has continued her progression playing sevens and is a full-time member of the England Women Sevens squad for 2017/18.
Holly’s schooling was at St Peter’s Primary and Range High and during that time her rugby idols were Dan Carter, Jonny Wilkinson and England’s Gill Burns, her schoolteacher – and her own dad, of course. The game runs in the family with brother Ben playing for the Lancashire U18 side.
She was vice-captain of England U18 Sevens when the squad became European champions twice and her distinctions include leading the Range High team in two National Schools finals and being in the North U18 team that won bronze medals in the Sainsbury’s school games. Holly also appeared for the highly successful Lancashire U15 and U18 sides. Her biggest disappointment was tearing a knee cartilage that prevented her from playing in the England U20 series against Canada in 2016.
Football and netball are other sports she enjoys as well as watching Serena Williams on the tennis circuit and she loves the Olympic Games. Usain Bolt is another of her favourite sports people. TV and baking are her top pastimes and listening to Coldplay, Bruno Mars and chart music also occupies her leisure hours. Other likes are the film Lilo & Stitch, James Corden and Carpool Karaoke, steak and chips and all the Harry Potter books. She regards herself as creative, positive and friendly, a close match to how she thinks others see her - approachable, friendly and bubbly.
Her proudest non-rugby moment was being highly commended in the Sefton Junior Sports Personality of the Year awards, something that has wider horizons than the oval ball.
Last updated: 4 January 2018