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Gay Times December 11 - Issue 400

Matthew Mitcham

With the London 2012 Olympic Games around the corner, gold-medal winning diver Matthew Mitcham is giving no interviews until next year in view of a relentless training schedule. But in a GT exclusive, the 23-year-old Aussie with the face of an angel and body of a god took time out of his busy schedule to chat to Jamie Tabberer about his life and career as one of the world’s highest profile out gay athletes.

Will you be competing in London in 2012?
The goal is to compete in London. I have just come back from nearly a year of injury in 2011, which has been really difficult so I am working hard on my rehabilitation and qualifying for London. There are a few events I need to compete at first, but I am looking forward to the challenge. Immediately afterwards I will be looking for some rest and time with my family. After this I will pause and consider my diving future. I have quite a few business obligations and I am studying so I’m sure it will be a busy time.

Was winning gold the proudest moment of your life?
Professionally speaking, winning gold in Beijing was the proudest sporting achievement. Second would have to be winning the World Cup in Canada this year – I was struggling with injury and unfortunately tore my ab at this event, but I needed to prove to myself that I could still compete at such a high level after so much disappointment with injury.

Are you able to live a normal life despite your fame?
Yes, I still work hard and have to clean up after myself! The difference is you lose some level of anonymity and your actions are there for the public to judge. This can feel a little invasive until you realise that you need to define your personal and public life and behave accordingly.

Are there any sports you’re awful at?
I’m terrible at all sports outside of trampolining and diving. I’m really, really bad at ball sports!

Words: Jamie Tabberer

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