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 cut up from his spouse and early life sweetheart Jemma in 2007, turning into the primary openly-gay rugby participant in Britain.
Thomas, who’s affectionately referred to as ‘Alfie’ because of his ‘resemblance to the alien personality within the TV sitcom ‘Alf’, battled along with his sexuality for years, telling of ways he was once pushed to the threshold of suicide on a couple of events.
He instructed the Day by day 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 longer. I might been thru each and every emotion below the solar looking to maintain this.
‘You get up one morning considering: ‘I will maintain it. The whole lot is ok,’ and the following morning you do not want someone to peer your face, since you assume that if other people take a look at you, they are going to know.’
Wales rugby legend Gareth Thomas is pictured in October 2010
He went on: ‘Infrequently I felt so on my own and depressed. I have stood on such a lot of cliff edges.
‘I used to visit the cliffs overlooking the seaside close to our cottage in St Brides Primary 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 particular person in the United Kingdom and has since labored with a couple of 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 medical institution secretary.
He started his wearing occupation along 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 by way of Stephen Jones.
He performed for Wales on the 2007 Rugby Global Cup and performed in 4 tournaments altogether
The fullback was once the second one perfect take a look at scorer for Wales, at the back of Shane Williams and captained for his nation, and quite a lot of membership squads.
At membership stage Thomas performed for Bridgend, Cardiff RFC, Celtic Warriors, Cardiff Blues and French aspect Toulouse.
All over 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.
Whilst 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 medical institution and was once suspected to have had a stroke, with fears the affect on his well being will have resulted in his retirement.
After marrying early life sweetheart Jemma in 2002, the couple struggled with dating issues.
Thomas mentioned he ‘knew he was once homosexual’ on the age of round 16 or 17, however failed to simply accept it till years later.
He admitted dishonest on her a couple of instances, insisting he at all times practised protected intercourse when dozing with males.
Thomas was once a part of ITV’s broadcast group for the Global Cup in Japan in 2019
The couple had been married for 5 years, all over which period Jemma suffered 3 miscarriages. They cut 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 Accept as true with and Stonewall.
He was once an ITV rugby pundit all over the 2011, 2015 and 2019 Global Cups.
In January 2012 he went into the Superstar Large Brother Area, 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 companion 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 thru.
His autobiography Proud was once launched in 2015, which gave distressing information about his combat along with his sexuality.
In November 2018 he was once assaulted in Cardiff town centre in a homophobic assault. He took to social media to proportion his ordeal and asked South Wales police maintain the 16-year-old suspect by means of restorative justice.
In September 2019 he become the primary primary British sports activities celebrity to return out as HIV-positive.
He mentioned he has been dwelling with the virus ‘for years’ and in addition published he’s now re-married to a person named Stephen, 56.
His husband does now not have HIV and the couple are living in Bridgend, South Wales, with Stephen’s 23-year-old daughter Anna.