Speaking to Gay Star News, rugby Keegan Hirst says since he came out in 2015, he's counseled several closeted athletes from different sports who would like to come out but don't feel ready.
Have you spoken to any closeted gay sportsmen?
I’ve had conversations with guys, and I’ve given advice. I’ve said how I found it. There’s been a few guys from a few different sports.
Do you think there is more pressure on people to stay closeted in sports?
I think it is. It’s a lot more focused on football players, probably because there’s a lot more money involved. While it shouldn’t matter who you date, it does. There’s also a big following in football. There’s a big call for people to come out, but it’s a personal thing. We’ve got to make it a good environment for someone to come out before it can actually happen.
What advice have you given to sportsmen in the closet?
You’ve just got to be in the right frame of mind. It doesn’t matter if you’re a sporstman or Joe Bloggs who works 9 to 5. You’ve got to be comfortable in your own skin. And have a good people around you. Do it when you’re ready to do it.
The woofy 29-year-old will soon make his debut for Wakefield Trinity, when he'll become the first openly gay English rugby player since Gareth Thomas to play Super League.