England cricketers Nat Sciver and Katherine Brunt announce engagement - on National Coming Out Day
England cricket stars Natalie Sciver and Katherine Brunt have marked National Coming Out Day by announcing their engagement.
The pair revealed they have been an item since all-rounder Brunt summed up the courage to ask her housemate out after their World Cup win in 2017 and today announced they have been engaged since New Year's Eve.
“I knew it was right,” recalled Brunt of that life-changing day at Lord's in July 2017. “I know there is nobody who is better for me. I had put it off but then I just asked her."
She admitted she is notorious for forgetting dates but combining her anniversary with a World Cup win would be one even she couldn't forget, saying it was "genius from me".
The team-mates had already been house mates for four years but Brunt joked that star batter Sciver was "madly in love" with her but she was "constantly putting her at arm's length" as she didn't want to disrupt the team dynamic or affect their friendship.
The pair told their England team-mates immediately but admitted there were obstacles to overcome when sharing the news beyond the dressing room.
"My parents are different to Natalie's" said Brunt. "They are quite Christian so it's [living as an openly gay woman] not something that is done and that's why it has held me back."
She added: "Having to tell my parents was really difficult, it was something I put off for a long, long time."
However, as she has got older she realised "it's not about that, it is about being yourself and living life properly."
Sciver admitted it had been easier for her as far as her family was concerned, but it was still hard to share with the world saying: "There is still something holding me back a little bit.
"Subconsciously there is a reason why I might put my hand in my pocket or avoid conversations about my relationships," she added.
Brunt added: "To this day, if someone asks me if I am with someone I say 'yes' and that's where it will stop.
"I am trying to change that now for myself because it is wrong and I shouldn't have to feel like that. There are times since we got engaged that I don't wear my engagement ring because I try to avoid somebody asking me."
The couple are both signed to the Nottingham-based Trent Rockets for the inaugural series of The Hundred in 2020 and could well come up against another married cricketing couple, South Africa's Dan van Niekerk and Marizanne Kapp.
The nuptials between England's greatest ever fast bowler, Brunt and star batter, Sciver, will take place after the series in India next September at the Chamonix holiday home that Sciver visited as a child.