Gareth Thomas is a former Welsh rugby participant. He has represented Wales in each Rugby Union and Rugby League and was once essentially the most capped participant within the nation till he was once overtaken in 2011.
He got here out as homosexual in 2009 following a break up from his spouse and early life sweetheart Jemma in 2007, changing into the primary openly-gay rugby participant in Britain.
Thomas, who’s affectionately referred to as ‘Alfie’ because of his ‘resemblance to the alien persona within the TV sitcom ‘Alf’, battled together with his sexuality for years, telling of the way he was once pushed to the edge of suicide on more than one events.
He advised the Daily Mail in December 2009: ‘I used to be like a ticking bomb. I believed I may just suppress it, stay it locked away in some darkish nook of myself, however I could not.
‘It was once who I used to be, and I simply could not forget about it any further. I’d been via each emotion below the solar seeking to maintain this.
‘You get up one morning pondering: ‘I will care for it. Everything is okay,’ and the following morning you do not want any person to look your face, since you assume that if other folks have a look at you, they’ll know.’
Wales rugby legend Gareth Thomas is pictured in October 2010
He went on: ‘Sometimes I felt so on my own and depressed. I’ve stood on such a lot of cliff edges.
‘I used to visit the cliffs overlooking the seaside close to our cottage in St Brides Major and simply take into consideration leaping off and finishing all of it.’
The yr after he got here out he was once voted essentially the most influential homosexual individual in the United Kingdom and has since labored with more than one LGBT charities amongst others.
Thomas is the youngest of 3 sons. His older brothers are Richard and Steven. His father Barry, 69, is a retired postal employee, and his mom Yvonne, 70, a former sanatorium secretary.
He started his carrying profession together with his local Bridgend in 1994, staying there for 3 years. He made his debut for Wales the next yr, representing his nation till 2007.
With 100 appearances he was once essentially the most capped Welsh Rugby Union participant ever till 2011 when the accolade was once taken via Stephen Jones.
He performed for Wales on the 2007 Rugby World Cup and performed in 4 tournaments altogether
The fullback was once the second one best possible take a look at scorer for Wales, in the back of Shane Williams and captained for his nation, and more than a few membership squads.
At membership degree Thomas performed for Bridgend, Cardiff RFC, Celtic Warriors, Cardiff Blues and French facet Toulouse.
During his time in France he was once discovered in charge of attack in 2005. Two years later he was once banned from the sport for 4 week on misconduct fees.
While he was once nonetheless taking part in in France he suffered a significant well being scare after a neck harm. He was once later rushed to sanatorium and was once suspected to have had a stroke, with fears the affect on his well being can have resulted in his retirement.
After marrying early life sweetheart Jemma in 2002, the couple struggled with courting issues.
Thomas mentioned he ‘knew he was once homosexual’ on the age of round 16 or 17, however failed to just accept it till years later.
He admitted dishonest on her more than one occasions, insisting he all the time practised secure intercourse when sound asleep with males.
Thomas was once a part of ITV’s broadcast workforce for the World Cup in Japan in 2019
The couple have been married for 5 years, all over which period Jemma suffered 3 miscarriages. They break up in 2007 with the divorce finalised in 2009.
Thomas carried on taking part in rugby till 2011 when he suffered a damaged arm. After lacking two months, he introduced he could be retiring from the game in October that yr.
Since he got here out in 2009, Thomas has labored with a large number of charities, together with ChildLine, the Terrance Higgins Trust and Stonewall.
He was once an ITV rugby pundit all over the 2011, 2015 and 2019 World Cups.
In January 2012 he went into the Celebrity Big Brother House, completing within the ultimate 3.
A yr later he seemed on Dancing On Ice, when he was once partnered with skilled skater Robin Johnstone.
Thomas is pictured collaborating in Dancing On Ice in January 2013 along his skating accomplice Robin Johnstone
This was once across the time a movie was once because of be made about Thomas’s existence. Actor Tom Hardy was once because of play Thomas, however the movie later fell via.
His autobiography Proud was once launched in 2015, which gave distressing information about his combat together with his sexuality.
In November 2018 he was once assaulted in Cardiff town centre in a homophobic assault. He took to social media to percentage his ordeal and asked South Wales police maintain the 16-year-old suspect by the use of restorative justice.
In September 2019 he become the primary main British sports activities big name to return out as HIV-positive.
He mentioned he has been dwelling with the virus ‘for years’ and in addition printed he’s now re-married to a person named Stephen, 56.
His husband does no longer have HIV and the couple reside in Bridgend, South Wales, with Stephen’s 23-year-old daughter Anna.