Wales legend Thomas admits he's gay
December 19, 2009
Gareth Thomas has publicly admitted that he is gay © Getty Images
Former Wales and British & Irish Lions captain Gareth Thomas has announced publicly that he is gay.
The 35-year-old Cardiff Blues player, who has won 103 Test caps for Wales and the Lions, admitted to The Daily Mail he had been through "all sorts of emotions" over the issue but did not want to be known as a "gay rugby player".
"I've been through all sorts of emotions with this, tears, anger and absolute despair," he told the newspaper. "I wasn't sure if I ever wanted to let people know and, to be honest, I feel anxious about people's reactions and the effect it might have on my family.
"I don't want to be known as a gay rugby player. I am a rugby player first and foremost. I am a man. I just happen to be gay. It's irrelevant. What I choose to do when I close the door at home has nothing to do with what I have achieved in rugby."
Thomas said he hoped coming out would help future generations of rugby players. He said his close family and friends had accepted his decision and would continue to support him.
"I'm not going on a crusade, but I'm proud of who I am," he added. "I feel I have achieved everything I could ever possibly have hoped to achieve out of rugby, and I did it being gay. I want to send a positive message to other gay people that they can do it, too.
"What I choose to do when I close the door at home has nothing to do with what I have achieved in rugby. It's pretty tough for me being the only international rugby player prepared to break the taboo. Statistically I can't be the only one, but I'm not aware of any other gay player still in the game."