Just hours after Australia all-rounder James Faulkner appeared to come out as gay in an Instagram post of his mother and “boyfriend”, the 29-year-old has said there was a “misunderstanding” and that he was not gay.
In a new post on Instagram, Faulkner wrote, “There seems to be a misunderstanding about my post from last night, I am not gay, however it has been fantastic to see the support from and for the LBGT community.”
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There seems to be a misunderstanding about my post from last night, I am not gay, however it has been fantastic to see the support from and for the LBGT community. Let’s never forget love is love, however @robjubbsta is just a great friend. Last night marked five years of being house mates! Good on everyone for being so supportive.
“Let’s never forget love is love, however @robjubbsta is just a great friend. Last night marked five years of being house mates! Good on everyone for being so supportive.”
Cricket Australia too confirmed the misunderstanding, and said that it “does not consider the social commentary this morning from James Faulkner to be a joke, nor does James”.
“His comment was made as a genuine reflection of his relationship with his business partner, best friend and house mate of five years,” a CA statement read. “He was not contacted for clarification before some outlets reported his Instagram post as an announcement of a homosexual relationship.
“James and CA are supportive of the LGBQTI community and recognises coming out can be an incredibly emotional time. The post was not in any way meant to make light of this and, though the support from the community was overwhelming and positive.
“Cricket Australia apologises for any unintended offence.”
A veteran of one Test, 69 ODIs and 24 T20 internationals, Faulkner had last donned the Aussie baggy green in a T20 match against Sri Lanka at the Adelaide on February 22, 2017. The all-rounder had won the Man of the Match award in the 2015 World Cup final which Australia had won by beating New Zealand by 7 wickets.
While many sportspersons have come out in the open in the past revealing their gay identity, the number of such instances in cricket, especially in the men’s section, has been scarce.
In 2011, former England international Steven Davies became the sport’s first active professional player to announce that he is gay. The wicketkeeper-batsman, who played 8 ODIs and 5 T20Is for England, made his revelations in a newspaper interview with The Daily Telegraph.
On July 9, 2018, South Africa women’s cricket team captain Dane van Niekerk and teammate Marizanne Kapp tied the knot, becoming the second couple among the current batch of international cricketers to get married after New Zealand’s Amy Satterthwaite and Lea Tahuhu.
After four years of courtship, Kiwi women cricketers Satterthwaite and Tahuhu got engaged in 2014 before getting married in March 2017.
More recently, on April 19, two women cricketers tied the knot after New Zealand batswoman Hayley Jensen, who has played 8 ODIs and 20 T20Is, married uncapped Australian cricketer Nicola Hancock.