Gay Dating App Grindr Sponsors French Second-Tier Rugby Club

Players at French rugby club Biarritz Olympique will carry the name and logo of gay dating app Grindr on their shirts in a rare sponsorship deal that kicks in next season.

The second-tier club based in France’s southwest will receive around 1 million euros ($1.2 million) a year under the deal with the world’s largest social networking app for gay, bi, trans, and queer people, French Bleu radio reported.

The club is partnering with Grindr to fight against homophobia and “continue its campaign for inclusion and acceptance within the league and within rugby overall,” it said in a statement carried by French site Rugbyrama.

While homophobia is becoming less tolerated in professional sports, gay insults are commonplace and many gay athletes still prefer to keep their personal lives private from their teammates.

A survey by English rugby club Harlequins with Australia’s Monash University last year found that 69% of male rugby players had heard their teammates using homophobic slurs in the previous two weeks. Rugby League player Israel Folau was sacked by Rugby Australia in 2019 for homophobic social media posts.

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