South African rugby’s first openly gay player

On a trip to the states recently, it struck me that Cape Town isn’t nearly as liberal as it likes to pretend it is.  Sure the old timers who hail from Cape Town liked to pretend they were either all part of the struggle secretly, or voted Progressive with some subversive Rodriguez tapes in their stereos, or did whatever they needed to while maintaining the status quo back in the bad old days.  Cape Townians like to pretend we’re very inclusive and embrace diversity and all that. So how come there are no openly gay players in the Western Province and Stormers set up?  Not to mention South African rugby as a whole.

So we have a liberal constitution, but I call bulls–t on our supposed liberality until we have an openly gay rugby player.  I mean, come on, it’s not like out of that squad of thirty or so, there couldn’t be one player who stares a moment longer than needed at Pierre Spies’s shorts or Wynand Oliver’s latest avant-garde hairdo.  There’s a lot of short shorts wearing and doing weights while staring into the mirror in the rugby community is all I am saying…

Actually, that’s not all I am saying.  Let’s face it, SA rugby has a pretty despicable legacy that many of us are trying to overturn.  There’s a perception out there that the master plan of apartheid was conceived during some  rugby team bonding breakaway training camp with Henrik Verwoed and few other tight forwards.  Just another example of bad ideas conceived by front rowers after a few beers.  Back in the day, that conception of SA rugby probably wasn’t far off from the truth, but now most rugby fans are very much “with it” and are a part of the new SA.  It’s time to radically change the image of SA rugby.

So how about extending that inclusiveness to the gay community?  I mean think of the marketing opportunities.  Those shower gel and anti-dandruff ads the Proteas do are pretty much 98% of the way there.  I am sure SA rugby could take it across the finish line.

Besides… could you imagine how it would freak some of the northern players the f–k out to have to scrum against a Stormers pack consisting of a few bad boys?  Now that would be intimidating…

So Big Daddy Rugby is sending out a call out to South Africa’s first openly gay player.  Show yourself dude… there’s a lot of homophobic bullying that you could help us put an end to.

Smokey the Bowler


  1. yes, it would be nice to have the Springboks show the way.

  2. Would it be to much for me to say that I hope I get to marry the rugby player that does finally come out. It would honestly be, if not every gay guys dream to have a rugby playing husband 🙂

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