John Bercow Accidentally 'Outs' Straight Rugby Star Ben Cohen As Gay

It's one thing to accidentally out someone for being gay when they don't want to be. It's another to do it when the person isn't even gay in the first place.

Commons Speaker John Bercow, who is a firm supporter of gay rights, did just that on Wednesday evening when introducing rugby star Ben Cohen at an event hosted by 'ParliOut', parliament's group for gay staff.

Introducing Cohen to the audience the Speaker said: "For those of you who aren’t aware, and I’m sure this August and well informed audience will be – his background is as a rugby international – capped no fewer than 57 times for his country".

According to the Pink News, Bercow praised Ben Cohen for his work to tackle homophobia in sport and praised him for being "openly gay".

Over the sound of laughter Cohen is reported to have shouted: "Don't tell my wife".

Realising his mistake Bercow quickly backtracked, adding: "No he’s not openly gay. I am not in favour of outing people against their will and that was an ignorant outing that I apologise to Ben for."

Cohen was attending the event to show his support for campaigns against homophobia in sport.

Welsh rugby player Gareth Thomas however did come out in December 2009.