Rugby star Sam Stanley has announced
that he's gay, making him Britain's first rugby union star to
publicly come out of the closet.
In an interview with the Sunday
Times, Stanley, who played for England Sevens at five
tournaments, said that coming out for professional athletes remains
“It is going to be an issue until
more people and athletes come out, until it is not an issue at all,”
the 23-year-old said.
“It might take years but hopefully
lots of people will find the courage.”
Stanley said that the fear of coming
out drove him to consider suicide.
“I was standing on a bridge about
four or five years ago, overlooking a motorway in Essex,” he told
the paper. “However, looking back, the idea that I would jump was
ridiculous but it was as if I was thinking that I could get rid of
the pain in one go.”
“You are so worried about what people
will think and I thought I couldn't be a macho rugby player the way I
was, and there was nothing else I wanted to do with my life,” he
Stanley added that covering up his
relationship with Laurence, his partner of five years, has also been
Earlier this month, Keegan Hirst became
Britain's first openly gay rugby league star.
Hirst receives outpouring of support after coming out gay.)