Devin Ibañez by Anthony Grassetti.

Major League Rugby player Devin Ibañez came out publicly as gay only last month but the Massachusetts-born sportsman is loving his new-found sense of freedom.

The New England Jacks player, 27, took the plunge on Instagram just before New Year’s Eve, telling fans in a moving post that he wanted to “start 2021 by celebrating the love of my life and my partner Fergus”, adding “I am openly gay.»

«The seed was planted in 2016. I suffered a potentially life-threatening injury, where I took a shoulder to the throat in a match,» Devin tells us. «The swelling almost closed my airway and caused a fracture to the cricoid cartilage in my throat. I had a big re-evaluation of what I wanted to do [and felt that] coming out publicly in a rugby space would be meaningful to me.

«There happened to be a day where I said, ‘You know, I don’t want to sit on this any longer’.»

Devin, who has previously played professionally in the UK for Yorkshire Division 1 team Scarborough RUFC, adds that his long-distance relationship with London-based Fergus played a big part in his decision to share a coming out post.

«I also wanted to surprise Fergus [by coming out publicly]», Devins says. «I wanted to give him a boost in the middle of all the negativity.

MODEL: Devin Ibañez
PHOTOGRAPHER: Anthony Grassetti
HAIR and MAKEUP: Erica Gomes

Courtesy of Attitude Magazine

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