Irma Testa, a 23-year-old boxer who won a bronze medal in the women's featherweight category at this year's summer Olympics, has come out as queer.
The boxer from Naples, Italy, who had also competed in the 2016 Rio Olympics and won gold at the 2019 European Championships, explained in an interview with Vanity Fair Italia that her Olympic success gave her the confidence to publicly come out.
She said: "The people who are close to me have known for years but I think it is right to tell everyone now.
"Speaking of sexual orientation in the world of sport has a special value, because champions are expected to be perfect. And for many homosexuality is still an imperfection.
Testa said that her Tokyo medal had become her "shield", and added: "Now that Irma the athlete is secure, Irma the woman can be sincere."
Testa said she did not want to assign a label to her sexual orientation, but added that she feels "relieved" to have publicly come out.