Manly Sea Eagles are experiencing extreme backlash after the players were not notified of the change to their jerseys this coming Thursday.
Pride initiative executed poorly
Since then, at least 7 players have refused to play in the match on Thursday due to religious beliefs. Thus far, Manly Sea Eagles Des Hasler made the change to the jerseys without consulting stakeholders or the players.
While the Manly Sea Eagles were trying to start a considerable initiative, it was not executed well as many were taken aback by the change.
To date, the Manly Sea Eagles coach, Des Hasler has spoken out about the recent change as well as the reasoning for the pride colors on the jersey.
“The jersey intent was to support the advocacy and human rights pertaining to gender, race, culture, ability, and LGBTQ movements. Sadly the execution of what was intended to be an extremely important … initiative was poor.”
Manly Sea Eagles coach apologizes
Right now, some players have chosen not to wear the jersey as it clashes with their cultural or religious beliefs. However, the Manly Sea Eagles will still wear the new jerseys in their match against the Roosters on Thursday
To date, the new LGBTQ jerseys incorporate rainbow colors where white lines generally are on the jersey. While several players have boycotted the jersey, there are some who welcomed the change as well as the initiative.
Thus far, Ian Roberts, who first came out as gay in 1995 is one of the people who supported the initiative taken by Hasler. The NRL player shared his thoughts on the matter.
“This is probably not the way we wanted this conversation to start but we’re having this conversation now. So I’m seeing it in a positive light.”
According to ABC News, the lineup for the game this Thursday is extremely disrupted. Right now, the Maly Sea Eagles are currently in eighth place and face fierce competition with players that have withdrawn from the game.