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Last Updated: Monday, 5 December 2005, 23:32 GMT
Thomas runs away with BBC honour
Wales captain Gareth Thomas
Gareth Thomas celebrates a memorable year
Wales and Lions captain Gareth Thomas has been crowned BBC Wales Sports Personality of the Year for 2005.

In a memorable Lions year, Thomas won the Heineken Cup with Toulouse, and led Wales to a first Grand Slam in 27 years and a first win over Australia in 18.

Thomas - who also saw his Wales side win Team of the Year - beat Ryan Giggs, Stephen Dodd, Joe Calzaghe, David Davies and Simon Jones to the award.

Chaz Davies and Non Stanford won the Carwyn James youngster awards.

Swansea middle-distance runner Stanford, 16, won the junior mini marathon for the fourth time.

Presteigne-born Davies, 18, competes in the 250cc MotoGP world championship.

Olympic gold medal-winning long jumper Lynn Davies won the merit award for outstanding contribution to Welsh sport.

The unsung hero prize went to Mary Lewis of Swansea Valley Swimming Club.

Every member of the Wales side and all the back-room staff have been part of a dream that we made come true
Gareth Thomas

Thomas was keen to pay tribute to his Welsh team-mates.

"It's been a great year for us all, I can't believe I do something that I love and get recognition like this," he said.

"Every member of the Wales side and all the back-room staff have been part of a dream that we made come true.

"My team mates with Toulouse and the Lions have also been just superb.

"But I have to thank my family more than anything, they've stood by me through everything.

"I don't think I could have won more this year if I'd wanted to!"

Lynn Davies added: "Welsh sport is on the up and up, I feel so proud to be a Welshman, seeing the achievements of the six world-class competitors up for the main award.

"It was a big surprise and an honour to win the merit award."

  • Thomas has also won the Rugby Union Writers' Club Pat Marshall Award as personality of the year.

    He joins an illustrious list of previous winners including Martin Johnson, Jonny Wilkinson and Jonah Lomu.

    His former Wales team-mate Rob Howley won the gong last year.



  • SEE ALSO
    BBC Wales Sport coverage
    31 Oct 05 |  Wales


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