Argentinian tennis player Nadia Podoroska has followed in the footsteps of Russia's Daria Kasatkina and revealed that she is gay.
Podoroska, who reached the semi-finals of the French Open in 2020, revealed in an Instagram story this week that she is in a relationship with fellow Argentinian player Guillermina Naya.
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A series of photos of the players hugging and kissing was accompanied by Podoroska writing: “Today I celebrate you from afar, but I feel you by my side every day of my life.”
VIVA EL AMOR AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA🥺❤️🧡💛💚💙💜🤎🖤🤍 pic.twitter.com/tm45aTnJRY
— daniela (@azarenkista) September 27, 2022
American icon Billie Jean King, who became one of the first professional women’s athlete to come out as gay in 1981, was among the many to praise Podoroska.
“Congratulations to WTA player Nadia Podoroska on her announcement,” King wrote on Twitter.
“Living authentically takes such courage, but it is always worth it.”
Podoroska replied: “Thank you very much, BJK.
“I respect you for everything you represent to us. You are a true role model in the fight for equality in sport and beyond sport."
Thank you very much, BJK.
I respect you for everything you represent to us. You are a true role model in the fight for equality in sport and beyond sport 🏳️🌈 https://t.co/8QE3kKXfWg
— Nadia Podoroska (@nadiapodoroska) October 6, 2022
Podoroska is currently ranked 203 in the world after a string of injuries this year. She made it to a career high ranking of World No.36 last year.
Naya is ranked 762nd in the world and hasn't been able to crack the WTA tour so far in her career, winning two titles at ITF level.
Podoroska and Naya have both represented Argentina together on the country's Billie Jean King Cup team.
Podoroska's announcement comes on the heels of Russian player Kasatkina, who also came out as gay in July.
The 25-year-old uploaded a photo to Instagram to confirm her relationship with Russian Olympic figure skater Natalia Zabiiako.
Asked if she was in a relationship with a woman, Kasatkina said: “Yes. Living in the closet is impossible.
“Not for the long run, no. It is too hard. It is pointless, you will be completely focused on that until you choose to come out. Of course, it is up to you to decide how to do it and how much you tell.
“Living in peace with yourself is the only thing that matters, and f*** everyone else.”
The top-ranked Russian player blasted her country's stance on homosexuality after officials proposed a new law which would ban information on all non-traditional sexual relationships in the public sphere.
"There are many subjects that are even more important than it that are banned, so it's no surprise," Kasatkina said.
“This notion of someone wanting to be gay or becoming one is ridiculous. I think there is nothing easier in this world than being straight.
“Seriously, if there is a choice, no one would choose being gay? Why make your life harder, especially in Russia? What’s the point?
“It is important to talk about these things. It is important for young people who have a hard time with society and need support.
“I believe it is important that influential people from sports, or any other sphere really, talk about it. It helps.”
Russian footballer Nadya Karpova had earlier spoken publicly about her own sexuality.
"My respect. I was happy for her, but also other people, especially girls needed to know that," Kasatkina said.
"It is important for young people who have a hard time with society and need support.
"I believe it's important that influential people from sports, and any other sphere speak about it. It really helps."
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