Former Wales captain Gareth Thomas was the victim of a homophobic assault in Cardiff on Saturday night.
Thomas earned 100 caps for Wales and captained the British & Irish Lions in two of his three appearances for the side. He came out as gay in 2009 while he was still playing.
The 44-year-old was attacked in the Welsh capital by a 16-year-old boy who admitted assault.
Thomas spoke about the assault in a video he posted on Twitter on Sunday.
— Gareth Thomas (@gareththomas14) November 18, 2018
‘I was the victim, in my home city, of a hate crime for my sexuality,’ he said. ‘I want to say thank you to the police, who were involved, and were very helpful and allowed me to do restorative justice with the people that did this, because I thought they could learn more that way than any other way. And also to the people of Cardiff who supported me and helped me.
‘There’s a lot of people out there who want to hurt us. But, unfortunately for them, there’s a lot more that want to help us heal. So this, I hope, will be a positive message.’
In a statement, South Wales Police said ‘a local 16-year-old boy was dealt with by way of restorative justice following the incident. Restorative justice was at the request of Mr Thomas and accepted by the teenager who admitted assault and was apologetic for his actions.’
The police said restorative justice was about ‘finding positive solutions to crime and encouraging young people to be accountable for the consequences of their actions’.