Saturday, 24 May 2008

Australia's first openly gay Olympian

Matthew Mitcham is brave enough to dive from a 10-metre platform for Olympic gold and courageous enough to do what no Australian athlete has done.

When Mitcham balances on the Beijing diving tower this August, like all Australian Olympians, he will be hoping the ones he loves will be there to watch him.

The gold medal hopeful's journey has not been easy. Those close to him have seen Mitcham, 20, battle depression, retire in his teenage years after physical and emotional burn-out, then nine months later resume his sport and build himself into the champion he is today.

Months out from the Games, Mitcham has taken the courageous step of revealing his sexuality to the media for the first time, in an exclusive interview with the Sydney Morning Herald.

He has also applied for a grant through a Johnson & Johnson Athlete Family Support Programme to have Lachlan his partner near him in Beijing.

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