First openly same-sex AFL player couple
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Author Topic: First openly same-sex AFL player couple  (Read 559 times)
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« on: February 13, 2017, 01:42:10 pm »

This is the brave new AFL. New thanks to a competition launched one short week ago, to rapturous audience acclaim, by this country's pre-eminent sports code. Brave because never in the storied history of the Victorian Football League-turned AFL has an elite male player declared his homosexuality.

Suddenly, in this infinitely more progressive reality where women are determining what AFL scoreboards say, we have Demon Clifford and Magpie Cula-Reid, a woman who already has serious form in high-profile pioneering.

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And just as their love story becomes public today with football as a backdrop, it has the sport at its origin. Cula-Reid and Clifford first laid eyes on each other on a footy field. A humble patch of grass in St Kilda, Melbourne, called the Peanut Farm Reserve and home to many an amateur Aussie Rules game.

It was six years ago. Clifford was a newcomer to the St Kilda Sharks women's football team and Cula-Reid was something of a footy legend, having been the face of a landmark Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal case that saw females win the right to play against males beyond age 12.

To command Clifford's attention, and also to teach her a lesson, Cula-Reid literally threw herself at the first-timer to Sharks training.

"I'd never played a proper game of women's football," Clifford told Fairfax Media this week.

"I'd been travelling for three-and-a-half years around Australia, my cousin was training with the Sharks down at St Kilda and so I went along.

"In that first session a ball was kicked deep into the pocket and all I've seen is this girl come across, punch the ball out of my hands and say: 'You have to do better than that to get into this team'.

"I was like: 'Who is this person and who does she think she is, it's my first training!'. But that was Penny; that's my first memory of Penny."

Cula-Reid, a lifelong Collingwood supporter and Sharks player since age 16, remembers the same moment vividly.

"It was probably a classic sandpit situation where you throw sand at the person you like," she reflected before her AFLW debut​.

Both women had close families that supported their choices in life, relationship-related and beyond.

"I have gay uncles and aunties and cousins," said Clifford, a full-time landscape gardener and, until recently, one-eyed Geelong fan.

"I was brought up to love the person not the gender, but when I met Penny I wasn't 100 per cent sure what direction I was going."

What about Clifford captivated Cula-Reid?

"The way Mia played her footy," she said.

"It was very fierce. And that's how she attacked her life as well.

"Mia's also a very genuine, caring person. She holds her family and her friends really close to her heart."

And traits of Cula-Reid that stood out to Clifford?

"I didn't even know Penny's history but thought it was just amazing to see a girl with so much skill who, at the same time, was so driven," she said.

"I was the free spirit. Penny has always had goals and ambitions. I think that's rare to find in people these days: people with genuine goals who know what they want."

There was no memorable out-on-a-limb romance moment. The pair didn't ever really arrange a first date. Making their relationship "official", about six months in, meant introductions to nearest and dearest rather than a "coming out".

There was no need for explanation at their footy club.

"I'm sure there are others – both genders – in similar situations in sports codes throughout the world," said Cula-Reid.

Why, then, does the duo think the same story hasn't emanated from a male AFL setting?

"I ask the same question but I don't have an answer," Clifford said.

"I guess if there are men who are gay in the AFL it will just take one or two people to come out and things might change. But until that day happens I don't think they know how to handle that."

Cula-Reid senses the time is nigh.

"I like to think people are generally more accepting of everything: of race, religion, sexuality," she said.

"It's all about love, more, now."
« Last Edit: February 14, 2017, 05:22:05 am by (Hidden) » Logged


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« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2017, 10:26:57 pm »

Just to clarify...this is on the women's league, right?  I confused Demon Clifford for Damon Clifford (might need new glasses)

Sooooooooo............

Congrats to both girls for finding love.

(Do all football players get nicknames in Australia?)
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« Reply #2 on: March 30, 2017, 11:09:05 am »

Just to clarify...this is on the women's league, right?  I confused Demon Clifford for Damon Clifford (might need new glasses)

Sooooooooo............

Congrats to both girls for finding love.

(Do all football players get nicknames in Australia?)

most do, pretty much - some people would have to think for a second, if you wanted their real names of the players they love LOL
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All the world is waiting for you and the power you possess
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« Reply #3 on: March 30, 2017, 11:14:32 am »

It is a HUGE thing - imo that the AFL even HAS a women's league - so it IS great but I will say this.. not one male AFL player has ever some out as gay in the the 75+ years it has existed - there have been rumours that a few contemplated it but that they were dissuaded by veterans who scared them with possible horror stories and stupid crap about locker room being uncomfortable etc

Australian men are very much of the thinking that lesbians are ok but gay men are dirt 

they did have a pride weekend where it was gay themed - in response to some real homophobic stuff that happened over time, in the sport

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All the world is waiting for you and the power you possess
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« Reply #4 on: March 30, 2017, 11:34:33 am »

A brave thing to do!
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« Reply #5 on: April 17, 2017, 05:10:29 am »

That must be hot in their bedroom!  Cheers
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« Reply #6 on: April 17, 2017, 09:08:03 am »

Just to clarify...this is on the women's league, right?  I confused Demon Clifford for Damon Clifford (might need new glasses)

Sooooooooo............

Congrats to both girls for finding love.

(Do all football players get nicknames in Australia?)

most do, pretty much - some people would have to think for a second, if you wanted their real names of the players they love LOL

Just to clarify, "Demons" and "Magpies" refer to the AFL teams the two players play for, those aren't the player's personal nicknames. Melbourne Demons and Collingwood Magpies. Interestingly the men's league (AFL) and women's league (AFLW) both use the same nicknames for their teams, so it can be confusing whether "Demon Clifford" is referring to a men's or women's league member.
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« Reply #7 on: April 17, 2017, 10:41:10 am »

Just to clarify...this is on the women's league, right?  I confused Demon Clifford for Damon Clifford (might need new glasses)

Sooooooooo............

Congrats to both girls for finding love.

(Do all football players get nicknames in Australia?)

most do, pretty much - some people would have to think for a second, if you wanted their real names of the players they love LOL

Just to clarify, "Demons" and "Magpies" refer to the AFL teams the two players play for, those aren't the player's personal nicknames. Melbourne Demons and Collingwood Magpies. Interestingly the men's league (AFL) and women's league (AFLW) both use the same nicknames for their teams, so it can be confusing whether "Demon Clifford" is referring to a men's or women's league member.


My bad - I rushed/misread that part- thought he meant the nicknames he saw around like plugger etc lol
« Last Edit: April 17, 2017, 10:46:54 am by (Hidden) » Logged



All the world is waiting for you and the power you possess
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« Reply #8 on: April 23, 2017, 08:27:40 pm »

It WOULD be women, LOL. Manly macho strait men type men can have a good time looking at and fantasizing about two women getting off together, but admit that a gay or openly bi jock being naked in the same locker room that they are also in, equally naked-- no, no. Suddenly they become snowflakes, fragile and delicate because without butch bluffing, someone might confuse them with being enough of a man that they can put their dick anydamnwhere they want and still be certified and qualified for the breeder's cup.

Personally, I think Australian Rules Football is THE greatest team sport. Men of all sizes, from "talls" to "smalls" have their role to play, and they play it with amazing skill and precision while wearing skimpy shorts that often bulge, and sleeveless shirts that emphasize their physical shape as much as their often straining pants do.

Anyone who thinks they are as much of a man as, say, Ben Cohen (str8 but noway narrow) should go the route of Nick Younquest and flaunt the visual power of their fitness and virility. Not that anybody asked me, of course. And Aussie Rules is not the sport that Ben and Nick play, but you get the gist. If all those soccer players in South America (and elsewhere!) can freely flop and flaunt and wank, everyone should just get in on the act and let it become the expected norm, not some ridiculous Victorian-holdover anomaly.

Ah, well. Now that the aussie rules torrent site has been clobbered by the authorities lest anyone make a profit from letting the world view games they would otherwise never see, this new season is already passing me by. Shameful.
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