Olympic champion Ian Thorpe talks during an interview with British presenter Michael Parkinson on Sunday. Photo: AFP
Swimming giant Ian Thorpe -received support and glowing praise on Monday for revealing he is gay in a move that advocates believe will help remove the stigma of homophobia in sport.
The five-time Olympic champion made the admission in an -interview with British presenter Michael Parkinson aired by Australia's Channel 10 on Sunday.
Thorpe's bravery in openly discussing his sexuality was a major talking point with fellow sports-people Cheap David Ross Jersey , celebrities and commentators speaking up for the global icon.
The New South Wales Gay and Lesbian Rights Lobby said his coming out would have a positive impact, particularly on young people.
"It's a measure of how far we've come that Ian Thorpe is able to come out and I think it's a measure of how far we have to go that it's a news story," the group's Justin Koonin told reporters.
Olympic gold medalist and gay Australian diver Matthew Mitcham said the revelations were an important development to break down the stereotypes about gay athletes.
Mitcham said sponsorship commitments would have weighed heavily on any athlete deciding whether to go public with their sexuality as the stereotypes and the stigma are well known.
"That's why we need high--profile gay athletes to prove the -stereotype wrong. Thorpe is about as high-profile as it gets Joe Maddon Cubs Jersey ," he said.
The swimming world embraced the 31-year-old for the courage to -reveal his deep secret.
"You've always been a great champion, now even more! I'm proud of you @IanThorpe," tweeted Dutch Olympic champion sprinter Pieter van den Hoogenband.
Swimming Australia president and yachting great John Bertrand congratulated Thorpe for making a stand.
"The fact that one of our -greatest Olympic athletes has been so honest sets a precedent in this country for more open dialogue Anthony Rizzo Cubs Jersey ," he said in a statement.
Athletes from other sports also weighed in with Australian cricketer Brett Lee saying, "It doesn't matter as long as you're happy in your own skin. Well done mate."
Even singing superstar Ricky Martin added his congratulations, tweeting Addison Russell Cubs Jersey , "Congrats @IanThorpe! Brave man! Happy for you! Millions appreciate what you've done! Proud of you!"
In the interview, Thorpe said he had "wanted to come out" for some time, but didn't feel as if he could make the admission.
"Part of me didn't know if Australia wanted its champion to be gay Jason Heyward Cubs Jersey , but I am telling not only Australia but the world that I am gay and I hope it makes this easier for others now," he said.
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