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Novak Djokovic on gay male tennis pro coming out: “I actually see that as a really courageous move”

We are still waiting for a top male tennis pro to come out publicly during his playing days the way female pros Martina Navratilova and Amelie Mauresmo did.

I find it encouraging that in recent years former pros such as Andy Roddick and James Blake have come out as LGBT allies and that Roger Federer earlier this year came out in support of any male pro who would decide to come out.

It’s so important that the leaders of the tour and the players with legions of fans lay the groundwork for a fellow player to take that step. Kudos to former pro Brian Vahaly who shared his story after retiring from the sport.

So I was very happy to read the words of current world number one Novak Djokovic, reigning Wimbledon and US Open champion and 14-time grand slam winner, on the topic which he was asked about in a press conference at the ATP Finals on November 18.

Asked how he would feel if a player came out as gay, Djokovic said: “I can only speak on my own behalf. I wouldn’t have anything against that, absolutely.

“You know it’s everybody’s right to have sexual orientation as they desire, any kind of direction in life they desire. I respect it. I don’t see people differently if they come out like that.”

“I actually see that as a really courageous move. We live in a society still, where certain parts of the world are not ready to accept that.”

FILE UNDER: Tennis

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