UK: Leeds rugby player faces probe over claims he called referee a ‘f**king f*g’

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a white background.

The Rugby Football League has launched a formal investigation into allegations that a Leeds player called a referee a “fucking fag”.

Leeds Rhinos player Zak Hardaker will face a full inquiry over claims he made the comments to referee James Child, during the team’s match against their match against Warrington on Friday.

The RFL said in a statement to the Guardian: “An allegation that Zak Hardaker of Leeds Rhinos made homophobic comments has been referred to the RFL compliance department, which has begun a formal investigation.”

The Rhinos eventually lost the match, 24-6.

Sarah Williams, the equality and diversity manager of the Rhinos, recieved an MBE last year after the team wore the Stonewall logo on their kit to combat homophobia.

Following the allegations, Hardaker tweeted: “Tough day at the office today, tough one to review that one, but it’s a new week and it’s now onto Leigh on Friday. #ChallengeCup”

His case will be heard by the RFL next week.

Earlier today, an Australian rules footballer came out as gay, admitting that he went off the idea of playing after he realised he is gay.

Rhyian Anderson-Morley wrote: “As a gay footballer, I see several different attitudes to homophobia in our game, and all have cropped up in recent weeks. I’d call them the good, the bad and the ugly.

“I’m still not sure whether I made the right decision [coming out], but I am sure about two things.

“One, that the more you talk about it and the bigger deal you make about there being gay football players, the harder it becomes to make that bold move.

“And two, that I feel kind of stuck at the moment – I haven’t been sure whether to make that decision and come out to the boys at my club, whether it is worth the drama or not.

“I guess this column is my way of doing that.”