Game plan


When Isaac Humphries came out last November, his Melbourne United teammates were supportive. But the gruelling process made it clear to him why so few professional sportsmen have declared themselves gay during their playing careers.


On the afternoon of November 30, 2022, two weeks after Isaac Humphries told the world he was gay, the young athlete was interviewed on ABC Radio. Humphries, who is now 25, sat upright on his long white couch at home, with his phone pressed to his ear, and spent the program recalling the tearful, viral admission he had made to his Melbourne United teammates.

Speaking with bald candour to the usually convivial Melbourne host Raf Epstein, Humphries tried to convey the deep disgust he’d long felt for himself. He explained, too, the exhaustion of keeping his sexuality a secret. The way his only companion was an aching loneliness. And how this all once culminated in a suicide attempt.

Epstein praised the young National Basketball League centre for his bravery in becoming the only out male professional basketball player on the planet, and together they celebrated the overwhelmingly positive public response to the news. Then came a line of inquiry into which the veteran broadcaster could only tiptoe. “If I can put this question to you very gently, Isaac,” said Epstein. “I don’t think these questions are fair questions, but they are questions that often follow these stories … Who cares?”

Click here for the full story from Good Weekend on February 11, 2023.

Photography by Josh Robenstone