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Australian Rugby League Brothers Sam and Thomas Burgess Fight Homophobia: VIDEO

Burgess

Sam and Thomas Burgess, who play for the South Sydney Rabbitohs, released a video in conjunction with the Bingham Cup's 'Out in the Field' study of anti-discrimination in sports.

Says Sam in the clip: "I don’t see why there should be any discrimination about colour, sexuality, your heritage or where you’re from. Sport is a great thing, and it brings people from all different aspects of life together, so why should your sexuality be a problem? The only way we are going to understand the issue is if people get out there and tell their story so we can help fix it.”

Adds Thomas: "I think discrimination in sport is old fashioned. We're very passionate about the game. We have lots of gay friends."

Watch the clip, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Australian Rugby Player Suspended for Anti-Gay Slur: VIDEO

Bateman

Mitchell Moses (right), a half-back for the NSW West Tigers Australian National Rugby League team, was given a two-match ban this week after calling Queensland forward Luke Bateman (above) a "f--king gay c--t".

MosesThe Sydney Morning Herald reports:

The comments were detected by referee Chris Sutton's microphone and were clearly audible on the television coverage of the match, which was watched by 103,000 viewers on Fox Sports.

Maroons officials spoke to Bateman after the match and the Canberra forward told them he was unfazed by the incident and did not want to make a complaint against the NSW player, whom he named.

They again checked on Bateman's welfare on Sunday morning and he said he was happy for the NRL to investigate the matter but did not intend to lodge an official complaint.

The offender was later identified as Moses.

Watch video of the incident, AFTER THE JUMP...

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New Zealand's Rugby Team Performs Wet, Shirtless 'Haka' Dance: VIDEO

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New Zealand’s All Blacks defeated England 26-7 Sunday night in the 2014 Hong Kong Sevens Tournament, but the highlight of the night was the rain-soaked traditional Maori 'Haka' dance the All Blacks performed in celebration of their win.

Check it out, AFTER THE JUMP...

Allblacks

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Irish Rugby Player Finds Joy in Tangle of Bums and Thighs: VIDEO

Kearney

Cameras captured a funny moment in Saturday's Six Nations rugby match-up between Ireland and Italy: the smiling face of Irish player Rob Kearney peering through a tangle of thick thighs and meaty rumps.

Someone was kind enough to clip it and set it to "A Whole New World" from Aladdin.

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

As Deadspin notes: don't try to understand this rugby vine, just enjoy it.

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Former Irish Rugby Star Says Gays Have No Interest In Sports: VIDEO

Francis

Former Irish Rugby star and sports commentator Neil Francis recently made comments about homosexuality and sports that have landed him in hot water. As RTE Sport reports, the remarks ensued during a round-table conversation on the radio show Off the Ball on Newstalk that began with a discussion of American football player Michael Sam’s recent coming out. Referring to Sam, Francis said:

“This is a different coming-out than any other. I was in the States, and I was watching Missouri [Sam’s college team] play, before they got to the Cotton Bowl, and I noticed this guy because he was very flamboyant, and y’know, a bit of a showman, and a very good player. No question about that.

“And I think it was Jimi Hendrix that said, ah, y’know, talking about Janis Joplin’s death, y’know: ‘Great career move’. So, is this - what is the motivation for coming out?”

After questioning Sam’s motives for coming out, Francis then went on to insist that there are not that many gay men involved in sports and that gay men by and large have little interest in sports:

“You do a survey of the hair-dressing industry and find out how many heterosexuals work in that…Professional sport, by its very nature, doesn’t promote, y’know, sort of, there are a wide range of people who are homosexual, and, that exact, the environment that they’re in isn’t something that they’re interested in…What are their interests? I mean, If you’ve ever sat down with, y’know, homosexual people, and asked them what their interests are, very often they have no interest in any kind of sport. That’s my experience from sitting down with them; I’ve done it on a regular basis.”

 On how his views will be received, Francis added:

 “A lot of people would sort of say, well, y’know, y’know sort of what you’ve said really is stereotyping, but y’know, I don’t care. I’m here. I’m gonna express an opinion.”

Francis said he hadn’t watched any of the Winter Olympics because he was “sick and tired of, y’know, sort of picking up, y’know angles on whether the Russians have an anti-gay policy or not. It’s about the Olympics or not, and the side issue has just put me off.”

Francis has since attempted to backpedal his derisive statements, according to The Telegraph:

"When I got home I had a listen to the interview again and it didn't sound like me at all – and a lot of people who listened to it said 'it's not your form'," he said on Today FM's 'The Last Word' programme yesterday.

"Some of the points I tried to make were very clumsily made and my language and the analogies I tried to make were quite poor and poorly expressed, and it's unusual for me not to be able to articulate myself. In this instance, I was unable to do so.

"Listening to what I said, on reflection, I probably said the wrong things and some of the things I said were extremely clumsy. On reflection, I would like to withdraw those comments and apologise profusely and unreservedly.”

You can watch the original discussion in full, AFTER THE JUMP…

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British Rugby Stars Gareth Thomas and James Haskell Talk Sochi Olympics, Gays in Sports: VIDEO

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Gareth Thomas, the first openly gay international rugby player, and James Haskell, London Wasps flanker and LGBT ally, both stopped by Sportslobster TV to discuss among other things the upcoming Sochi Olympics and the wider issue of the lack of openly gay professional athletes. Best Movies Ever reports:

Screen Shot 2013-11-08 at 4.57.08 PMWhen asked what his thoughts were on the questions raised about upcoming sporting events planned for countries where there are laws in place against homosexuality, such as the 2014 Russian Winter Olympics and 2022 Qatar World Cup, Thomas gave strong views: "If I was part of a squad going to these countries - I would go there as a gay man and be the best at what I was doing and prove that their laws can not stop me at being the best I can be in sport. Athletes can't have the power to make decisions as to whether to compete in countries where they tolerate homosexuality. They often only have one chance to be the best and they have worked so hard to get there that nothing should hold them back."

England and Wasps flanker, Haskell, supports these views and claims many rugby players are hiding their sexuality due to perceived stigma: "Statistically there must be gay rugby players out there but I don't know of a single one. I feel bad anyone struggles to be true to who they are, as no one should have to live a lie."

"With Gareth - being gay was just a side story, as he was just a brilliant rugby player first and foremost. I don't think most in rugby could care less whether a teammate was gay - but there are definitely boundaries where some who you call friends and teammates may look at you a different way if you come out. The fact a rugby player may say they prefer men to women does not mean it should have any relevance in sport. Certainly in rugby it is becoming more acceptable but, regardless of what people may say, there will always be preconceptions and stereotypes in the sport."

Check out a video of the two discussing gay players as well as Thomas's upcoming biopic starring Mickey Rourke AFTER THE JUMP...

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