Sydney University Football Club, the birthplace of Australian rugby which continues to breed many star Super Rugby and Wallaby greats, is teaming up with Australia’s World Champion gay rugby team the Sydney Convicts to once more welcome diversity in sport.
“Diversity in life, and sport, is a human right and I am proud that Sydney University Football Club is continuing to work with the Sydney Convicts to ensure this message is being received by everyone in the community,” says Tom Carter, University player and NSW Waratah (pictured below).
For the second year running, an exhibition rugby 10’s game will be played at the historic No. 1 Oval at Sydney University between The Students and The Convicts this Saturday 28th April, part of SUFC’s Diversity Day celebrations.
The game is designed to spread the word about tolerance of diversity in sport and life and help with the fight against homophobia in the community. SUFC is the first Premier Rugby Club anywhere in the world to become actively involved in such a cause. The two teams will again be competing for the ‘Diversity Shield’, which was won 24-5 by The Students in the inaugural match last year.
“The Sydney University Football Club is very pleased to be working with the Sydney Convicts for our Diversity Day. The partnership of these two well-known clubs is a fantastic thing for rugby union in Australia,” says David Mortimer, President of SUFC.
“SUFC continues to be very proud to be associated with this initiative and helping to spread the word about diversity, not only in sport, but in everyday life.”
President of the Sydney Convicts David Whittaker welcomes their support. “It’s brilliant that Sydney Uni continues to put on a day especially designed to tackle homophobia in the community. It once again proves that rugby union is leading the way in supporting diversity in sport.
“We hope that rugby players at all levels will feel comfortable being themselves and will ultimately be able to enjoy the game without even thinking about their sexuality,” adds Whittaker. “The great leadership being shown by SUFC certainly helps us achieve this goal.”
As for the game itself, Sydney University Club Captain James Swan says it’ll be a friendly one, but still competitive. “You can be sure that the Sydney Uni boys will not be taking it easy on the Convicts when we play a match on Diversity Day,” he laughs.
“Whether rucking or mauling, we will be in it to win and the Convicts are up for some tough competition from The Students!”
2012 is a big year for the Sydney Convicts. In late May, the team will be flying out to Manchester, England to compete in the 6th Bingham Cup – the World Cup of Gay Rugby.