Welsh rugby legend Gareth Thomas has revealed that he is HIV positive, saying he wants to "break the stigma" after making the news public.
In 2009, Thomas came out as gay and is the first sportsman from the United Kingdom to go public about having the virus.
He also revealed he started to develop suicidal thoughts after he came to terms with this diagnosis.
“I’ve been living with this secret for years. I’ve felt shame and keeping such a big secret has taken its toll," Thomas told the Sunday Mirror.
“I was in a dark place, feeling suicidal. I thought about driving off a cliff. To me, wanting to die was just a natural thought and felt like the easier way out, but you have to confront things.”
Last November, Thomas was attacked by a 16-year-old at a Cardiff city centre in a homophobic hate crime, but he wants his attacker to be dealt with by way of restorative justice.
The 45-year-old, who captained the British and Irish Lions on the 2005 tour of New Zealand, hopes that by making his diagnosis public he can help others and make a difference.
“I’m speaking out because I want to help others and make a difference. I hope me speaking out about my diagnosis will help a lot of people.” Thomas told the Sunday Mirror.
The former Cardiff Blues player will be a TV pundit in the upcoming Rugby World Cup.