A graduate student studying transgender athletes who previously played for men’s football teams at England’s Hastings University has now been chosen to represent England for the national university team.
Blair Hamilton, who now identifies as female, is currently a PhD student at the University of Brighton and focuses on the “effects of testosterone suppression or supplementation on the athletic performance of transgender athletes,” according to SportBible.
The outlet reported that the Hastings United Women team made the announcement that Hamilton was selected for the team on Twitter.
“The ‘U’s are delighted to announce @Blair90x has been selected for the England Universities Sport Women’s Squad!”
The 'U's are delighted to announce @Blair90x has been selected for the England Universities Sport Women's Squad!
— Hastings United Women (@HastingsUFCW) March 30, 2022
Hamilton also tweeted about the news, responding to Hastings’ tweet by writing “Buzzing for this though!”
Buzzing for this though! https://t.co/HqE8ywuqpK
— Blair Hamilton ⚽🏳️🌈 (@Blair90x) March 30, 2022
This comes as the placement of men in women’s sports is gaining international scrutiny. For the first time last year, gender nonbinary and transgender athletes competed in the Olympic Games, including weightlifter Laurel Hubbard who competed for years as a male before transitioning.
In the United States, college swimmer Lea Thomas, who previously competed as a man before coming out as transgender and joining the women’s team, has been blowing away female competition.
The news of Hamilton’s position on the Hastings women’s team drew criticism as well.
— Liz Steel 🌿 (@lizsteelpt2) April 1, 2022
I played women's football in a minor league & I would fear for my safety chasing a ball with this person on the pitch. Were there literally no female goalkeepers available?
— fuzzybear (@Ffuzzyface) April 1, 2022
Celebrating cheating. How delightful.
— Lily / Mujer Guerrera #NoThankYou (@MujerGuerrera78) April 1, 2022
Erasure of Women in Women's Sport✅
— Ro (there are 4 lights) (@Ronagig) April 1, 2022
Celebrating cheating. Great look.
When women’s sport is successfully demolished you can look back fondly and remember you were there at the forefront of removing women’s opportunities for fair sport. Go you.
— Woodmoose 💜🤍💚 ♀️ (@Woodmoose) April 1, 2022
The team, however, merely condemned the “abuse” issued online in a statement.
“Hastings United Football Club would like to respond and condemn the disgraceful and tasteless comments made on Twitter since the announcement of Blair Hamilton’s call up to the England Women’s University Squad,” Hastings United Women chairman Billy Wood said, according to SportBible.
“We do not condone messages of abuse, many as always coming through online accounts where the individuals hide behind a username,” he added. “Online abuse is still abuse and the accounts have been reported and passed on to Twitter.”
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