Italian boxer Testa becomes gay after Olympic success

PHOTO FILE: Boxing - Women's Featherweight - Semifinals
FILE PHOTO: Tokyo 2020 Olympics – Boxing – Featherweight – Semifinals – KKG – Kokugikan Gymnasium – Tokyo, Japan – July 31, 2021. Irma Testa of Italy in a match against Nesthy Petecio of the Philippines REUTERS / Ueslei Marcelino

December 3, 2021

ROME (Reuters) – Irma Testa, an Italian Olympic bronze medalist who has come out as gay, says her success at the Tokyo Olympics earlier this year has given her more strength to come out. his sexual orientation.

The 23-year-old boxer won bronze in the women’s featherweight at Tokyo 2020. Before that, she competed in Rio 2016, where she lost in the quarterfinals while she also won gold at the 2019 European Championships.

“People close to me have known for years but I think it is right to tell people now,” she told the Italian edition of Vanity Fair.

“There is special value in talking about sexual orientation in the sports world, because champions are expected to be perfect people. And for many people homosexuality remains an imperfection.

“Many athletes keep quiet and hide for fear of tarnishing their image. It was the same for me, a few months ago. But that Tokyo medal became my shield – now that the Irma athlete is safe, the Irma woman can be sincere. ”

Testa follows in the footsteps of the likes of British Olympic gold medalist Nicola Adams and Ireland’s Olympic lightweight champion Kellie Harrington as an openly gay female boxer.

More than 160 openly LGBTQ athletes competed in Tokyo, making it the most inclusive Games ever held.

(Reporting by Alasdair Mackenzie; Editing by Rohith Nair) Italian boxer Testa becomes gay after Olympic success

Huynh Nguyen

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