Africa’s 1st gay rugby club: The Jozi Cats
The Jozi Cats, an amateur club playing out of Johannesburg, South Africa, have produced several hard-hitting photos and messages on social media as part of their campaign to grow the club.
The campaign includes one of their leading players in a tiara with the label ‘Queen?’, another holding a flower and rugby ball with the backdrop of ‘Pansy?’ and their lead slogan, ’Rugby That’s So Gay!’
Jozi Cats Chairman and player Teveshan Kuni said the campaign is all about inclusiveness, empowering men to play a sport they love without question or criticism.
“The truth of the matter is that many of our players don’t feel like they can be openly gay and be a rugby player in South Africa,” he told the Daily Maverick.
“So we started the Jozi Cats as a space where they could be both. The club is somewhere that players can be social and play competitive rugby in a safe and non-judgemental environment.
“Over and above everything else, we wanted to show that these are just ordinary guys who love playing rugby and who happen to be gay.”
Though attitudes towards homosexuality have improved greatly all around the world, the situation is still critical in the African continent, where 38 of 54 countries still criminalize homosexuality.
The team has partnered with the Wanderers Rugby Club, which allows them access to world-class training facilitates, and they hope to compete at the Global Gay Rugby Championships representing South Africa.