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Aki Mizutani / Sydney Convicts 1st XV forward When Aki Mizutani came out to his family in Japan they simply said no. So what did he do? He typed ‘rugby + gay’ into Google. The Sydney Convicts Rugby Club popped up top of the list. Despite his patchy English, Aki didn’t muck around. He booked himself a one-way plane ticket to Sydney, stepped off the plane on a Wednesday, joined training on a Thursday, then played his first game of rugby with the Convicts on a Saturday. He’s a big guy in Japan and easily makes the scrum but here in Australia, it’s not that easy, compared to the other blokes, he’s small. But Aki is determined to wear the number 1 jersey and fill the position that is loose head prop.

Aki Mizutani / Sydney Convicts

1st XV forward

When Aki Mizutani came out to his family in Japan they simply said no. So what did he do? He typed ‘rugby + gay’ into Google. The Sydney Convicts Rugby Club popped up top of the list. Despite his patchy English, Aki didn’t muck around. He booked himself a one-way plane ticket to Sydney, stepped off the plane on a Wednesday, joined training on a Thursday, then played his first game of rugby with the Convicts on a Saturday. He’s a big guy in Japan and easily makes the scrum but here in Australia, it’s not that easy, compared to the other blokes, he’s small. But Aki is determined to wear the number 1 jersey and fill the position that is loose head prop.

Charlie Winn / Sydney Convicts 1st XV Coach By the time Charlie returned to his hometown, the Sydney Convicts were up and running. He joined and was soon crowned Captain of the 1st XV, leading the club to victory in New York in 2006 and again in Dublin in 2008. The Cup was lost to the Gotham City Knights in 2010. In 2011 Charlie transitioned from player to coach and reclaimed the Bingham Cup in Manchester 2012, making the Sydney Convicts the most successful gay rugby team on the planet and ‘the’ team to beat. With his a hometown advantage and more media attention than ever, the pressure is on in 2014. Will Charlie succeed in leading his team to victory?

Charlie Winn / Sydney Convicts

1st XV Coach

By the time Charlie returned to his hometown, the Sydney Convicts were up and running. He joined and was soon crowned Captain of the 1st XV, leading the club to victory in New York in 2006 and again in Dublin in 2008. The Cup was lost to the Gotham City Knights in 2010. In 2011 Charlie transitioned from player to coach and reclaimed the Bingham Cup in Manchester 2012, making the Sydney Convicts the most successful gay rugby team on the planet and ‘the’ team to beat. With his a hometown advantage and more media attention than ever, the pressure is on in 2014. Will Charlie succeed in leading his team to victory?

Brennan Bastyovanszky / Sydney Convicts 1st XV Loose Head Prop Brennan is the ultimate gay rugby pin up boy. He reckons he was born for contact sport, he’s got a hot body and he’s been playing rugby for eons. More than capable of playing any position in the scrum, Brennan is a powerful utility forward used by the coach to plug any weak spots. And he’s willing to do his bit although lately they’ve had him playing number 1, loose head prop and he loves it. But being very cute, even with years of rugby experience, doesn’t assure you a spot in the Sydney Convicts 1st XV, especially with hungry rookies chomping at the bit.

Brennan Bastyovanszky / Sydney Convicts

1st XV Loose Head Prop

Brennan is the ultimate gay rugby pin up boy. He reckons he was born for contact sport, he’s got a hot body and he’s been playing rugby for eons. More than capable of playing any position in the scrum, Brennan is a powerful utility forward used by the coach to plug any weak spots. And he’s willing to do his bit although lately they’ve had him playing number 1, loose head prop and he loves it. But being very cute, even with years of rugby experience, doesn’t assure you a spot in the Sydney Convicts 1st XV, especially with hungry rookies chomping at the bit.

Pearse Egan / Sydney Convicts 2nd XV Forward Growing up in Ireland was torture for Pearse, the bullying rife. Not a day went by without being called a faggot or being spat on at school. Scouts, karate, basketball – none of the groups he joined ever lasted. But the Convicts are different. They don’t sneer at Pearse because he’s gay. Despite the voice in his head saying ‘You can’t do it Pearse,’ perhaps he can do it. He’s shed more than 20 kilograms, made the 2nds and even kissed a few boys.

Pearse Egan / Sydney Convicts

2nd XV Forward

Growing up in Ireland was torture for Pearse, the bullying rife. Not a day went by without being called a faggot or being spat on at school. Scouts, karate, basketball – none of the groups he joined ever lasted. But the Convicts are different. They don’t sneer at Pearse because he’s gay. Despite the voice in his head saying ‘You can’t do it Pearse,’ perhaps he can do it. He’s shed more than 20 kilograms, made the 2nds and even kissed a few boys.