Former All Blacks player Campbell Johnstone comes out as gay

Rugby player Campbell Johnstone played three tests for the All Blacks, New Zealand’s national rugby team, alongside playing 38 games for the Christchurch based Crusaders and appeared 72 times for Canterbury. Tonight, in an interview on New Zealand television, he shared he is gay.

He makes history as the first member of the All Blacks team who has shared that they are gay. Johnstone said he was coming out publicly so that any other players in a similar situation would have an easier journey.

“If I open up that door and magically make that closet disappear, then we’re going to help a lot of people.” Johnstone said of his decision.

The former player said he didn’t share he was gay during his playing career because he himself had not yet felt comfortable about his sexuality and be feared if people knew he was gay his dream of playing for New Zealand might not come true.

“I pushed that side of me down deeper and deeper. I went to some interesting places.” Johnstone said.

Johnstone said he told his team mates long ago that he was gay, comparing the moment to announcing something as casual as running out of milk. Johnstone said he was now in a position to act as a role model for other players.

Johnstone said other players should not come out unless they wanted to, but he hoped the pathway for the next gay player would be easier.

Watch the interview. 

OIP Staff

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