#UK Rugby legend Gareth Thomas, 48, denies court claim that he infected ex-partner with HIV  #UKnews

#UK Rugby legend Gareth Thomas, 48, denies court docket declare that he contaminated ex-partner with HIV  #UKnews

Gareth Thomas is a former Welsh rugby participant. He has represented Wales in each Rugby Union and Rugby League and was essentially the most capped participant within the nation till he was overtaken in 2011.

He got here out as homosexual in 2009 following a cut up from his spouse and childhood sweetheart Jemma in 2007, turning into the primary openly-gay rugby participant in Britain.

Thomas, who’s affectionately often called ‘Alfie’ as a consequence of his ‘resemblance to the alien character within the TV sitcom ‘Alf’, battled together with his sexuality for years, telling of how he was pushed to the brink of suicide on a number of events.

He informed the Daily Mail in December 2009: ‘I used to be like a ticking bomb. I believed I may suppress it, preserve it locked away in some darkish nook of myself, however I could not.

‘It was who I used to be, and I simply could not ignore it any extra. I’d been by way of each emotion beneath the solar attempting to take care of this.

‘You get up one morning considering: ‘I can deal with it. Everything is ok,’ and the subsequent morning you don’t need anybody to see your face, since you assume that if folks have a look at you, they are going to know.’

Wales rugby legend Gareth Thomas is pictured in October 2010

Wales rugby legend Gareth Thomas is pictured in October 2010 

He went on: ‘Sometimes I felt so alone and depressed. I’ve stood on so many cliff edges.

‘I used to go to the cliffs overlooking the seaside close to our cottage in St Brides Major and simply take into consideration leaping off and ending all of it.’

The 12 months after he got here out he was voted essentially the most influential homosexual particular person within the UK and has since labored with a number of LGBT charities amongst others.

Thomas is the youngest of three sons. His older brothers are Richard and Steven. His father Barry, 69, is a retired postal employee, and his mom Yvonne, 70, a former hospital secretary.

He started his sporting profession together with his native Bridgend in 1994, staying there for 3 years. He made his debut for Wales the next 12 months, representing his nation till 2007.

With 100 appearances he was essentially the most capped Welsh Rugby Union participant ever till 2011 when the accolade was taken by Stephen Jones.

He played for Wales at the 2007 Rugby World Cup and played in four tournaments altogether

He performed for Wales on the 2007 Rugby World Cup and performed in 4 tournaments altogether

The fullback was the second highest attempt scorer for Wales, behind Shane Williams and captained for his nation, and numerous 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 discovered responsible of assault in 2005. Two years later he was banned from the sport for 4 week on misconduct prices.

While he was nonetheless enjoying in France he suffered a significant well being scare after a neck damage. He was later rushed to hospital and was suspected to have had a stroke, with fears the impression on his well being might have led to his retirement.

After marrying childhood sweetheart Jemma in 2002, the couple struggled with relationship issues.

Thomas mentioned he ‘knew he was homosexual’ on the age of round 16 or 17, however failed to simply accept it till years later.

He admitted dishonest on her a number of occasions, insisting he all the time practised protected intercourse when sleeping with males.

Thomas was part of ITV's broadcast team for the World Cup in Japan in 2019

Thomas was a part of ITV’s broadcast group for the World Cup in Japan in 2019

The couple have been married for 5 years, throughout which period Jemma suffered three miscarriages. They cut up in 2007 with the divorce finalised in 2009.

Thomas carried on enjoying rugby till 2011 when he suffered a damaged arm. After lacking two months, he introduced he can be retiring from the game in October that 12 months.

Since he got here out in 2009, Thomas has labored with quite a few charities, together with ChildLine, the Terrance Higgins Trust and Stonewall.

He was an ITV rugby pundit in the course of the 2011, 2015 and 2019 World Cups.

In January 2012 he went into the Celebrity Big Brother House, ending within the ultimate three.

A 12 months later he appeared on Dancing On Ice, when he was partnered with skilled skater Robin Johnstone.

Thomas is pictured taking part in Dancing On Ice in January 2013 alongside his skating partner Robin Johnstone

Thomas is pictured participating in Dancing On Ice in January 2013 alongside his skating associate Robin Johnstone 

This was across the time a movie was as a consequence of be made about Thomas’s life. Actor Tom Hardy was as a consequence of play Thomas, however the movie later fell by way of.

His autobiography Proud was launched in 2015, which gave distressing particulars about his battle together with his sexuality.

In November 2018 he was assaulted in Cardiff metropolis centre in a homophobic assault. He took to social media to share his ordeal and requested South Wales police take care of the 16-year-old suspect by the use of restorative justice.

In September 2019 he turned the primary main British sports activities star to return out as HIV-positive.

He mentioned he has been dwelling with the virus ‘for years’ and in addition revealed he’s now re-married to a person named Stephen, 56.

His husband doesn’t have HIV and the couple stay in Bridgend, South Wales, with Stephen’s 23-year-old daughter Anna.