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James Haskell: I never came out as straight so I don’t see why other people should have to say 'I'm gay'

The rugby player joined the LGBTQ team Northampton Outlaws for a special training session

2019-02-14

Words: Steve Brown

England rugby union star James Haskell hopes one day sexuality won’t be ‘a thing’.

The Northampton Saints player - and former Attitude cover star - helped out at a training session for the only LGBTQ club in the East Midlands, Northampton Outlaws RFC.

The team was formed back in 2012 and is the only gay and inclusive rugby team in the region and during a training session, the England star put the players through their paces, Rugby Pass reported.

While at the club, Haskell praised the team for their inclusivity and said he doesn’t see why people have to come out as gay because he “never came out as straight”.

He said: “The Outlaws are really putting their hands up and saying, ‘We can do this’ and they’re giving people a sanctuary.

“My view on sexuality is it’s a shame that it’s something people still have to announce or deal with, but obviously we do, and it’s like that because a lot of people aren’t informed as they should be.

“I think there’s a multitude of religions that make sexuality a very uncomfortable thing which is a shame – I never came out as straight so I don’t see why other people should have to put their hand up and say, ‘I’m gay or I’m this or I’m that’ but we live in this world.

“I can’t imagine what it’s like to be struggling to actually be yourself, to live a life where you’re not able to be yourself and to come to a team like the Outlaws where you’re not judged, you’re accepted, it’s essential.

“We all have our struggles and sexuality for a lot of people is a massive struggle – having teams like this where you know you can get involved is massively important.

“Long may it continue but hopefully one day we’ll reach a stage where sexuality is not a thing, hopefully rugby will keep being a pioneer in this area.”