It was possibly the most romantic moment of the Rio Olympics so far. It was certainly a first, when Brazilian women’s rugby player Isadora Cerullo accepted
an on-field offer of marriage from her girlfriend Marjorie Enya on Monday following the 7s final.
Surprisingly, Cerullo is the first ever athlete to ever receive a marriage proposal at an Olympic games. The couple have been together for two years.
The International Olympic Committee welcomed news of the engagement.
“From the IOC it’s a fantastic and positive story obviously and, as you know, it’s in the charter that we don’t accept any discrimination on grounds of race or religion, and sexuality is now included in that. But this is kind of takes it even further, it’s a celebration of that and I think, you know, it certainly made me feel good this morning when I heard about the story, so yeah it’s excellent,” IOC spokesman Mark Adams said.
Brazil made same-sex marriage legal in 2013. Outside some of the sporting venues in Rio, there was also a broadly positive reaction to the marriage proposal.
“I think when people make the choice of what they want to do, you know, they have the right to choose what they want to do,” said one man.
“I think the proposal was wonderful and accurately represents the Olympic spirit… The union of different populations, tolerance, respect for diversity. But unfortunately in Brazil people still have a lot to do. We are making slow steps to get more rights, independent of sexual orientation,’‘ another woman said.
At least 45 openly gay athletes are competing this summer in Rio, thought to be the highest ever.