Cardiff Blues can confirm that Rhys Thomas will leave the Blues at the end of the season to join London Wasps.
Rhys Thomas joined Cardiff RFC in the spring of 2003 and made his try scoring debut for the Blues against the Celtic Warriors on December 27 2003.
During his time with the Blues Rhys enjoyed a healthy rivalry with fellow hooker Gareth Williams who retired at the start of the season. Despite or because of the competition the 29 year old went on to make a record 180 appearances scoring 15 tries.
Speaking of the announcements Cardiff Blues Forwards Coach Justin Burnell said:
“I would like to thank Rhys for his huge contribution to the Cardiff Blues over the past 9 years.”
“It has been a successful period for the team that saw us lift the Amlin Cup in 2010 and the EDF Cup in 2009 thanks in no small part to the efforts of senior players such as TR.”
“However, all teams have their life cycles and this is a new era for the Cardiff Blues as we aim to build for the future with a young, exciting squad.”
“Through our Academy structure we have developed some very promising players such as Macauley Cook, Dan Fish, Harry Robinson and Sam Hobbs and are also looking to bring one or two more players in to ensure we are once again competitive next season.”
“This season we have looked to integrate these youngsters with the more established players such as Jamie Roberts, Leigh Halfpenny, Chris Czekaj, Sam Warburton and Bradley Davies who are all in contract next season.”
“We would like to wish Rhys the best of luck with London Wasps next season.”
Rhys Thomas said:
“I have had a fantastic time with Cardiff Blues since joining in 2003 and have been fortunate to be part of some successful teams winning the EDF and Amlin Cups.”
“I would like to thank all the supporters for all their encouragement over the last 10 years and have made some life long friends at the club.”
“However, I felt the time was right for a fresh challenge.”
“I am really looking forward to linking up with Dai Young again who has been a big influence to me in my career and I’m excited by the challenge of playing in England with London Wasps.”