Watch: Guinness tells Gareth Thomas' extraordinary story ahead of the Rugby World Cup

With the help of Clarion Communications, Guinness has launched two new campaigns celebrating stories of strength of character and integrity in the world of rugby ahead of the Rugby World Cup kick-off next week.

'Gareth Thomas: Never Alone' tells the story of the Welsh rugby legend
'Gareth Thomas: Never Alone' tells the story of the Welsh rugby legend

The official beer of the RBS 6 Nations tournament, the England, Scotland and Wales teams and various club sides, Guinness' two films were created by Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO and are being promoted by Clarion.

'Gareth Thomas: Never Alone' tells the story of him coming to terms with his sexuality while married and making his living in the macho world of professional rugby. The former Welsh captain said: "I am very proud about my rugby playing career, but I am more proud of the fact that my teammates supported me to play rugby being Gareth Thomas, being the person that I am, 100 per cent."

A second film, 'Ashwin Willemse: The Right Path', tells the tale of former Cape Town gang member Ashwin Willemse, who won 19 caps for South Africa after turning his life around, and has music specially composed by Nick Cave. Willemse said: "Without rugby, and the incredible support of my teammates and family, I most probably would have ended up either in prison or in a coffin six-foot under. What they taught me is that we can defy the odds."

Nick Britton, marketing manager for Guinness Western Europe, said: "These films perfectly demonstrate the values of integrity and character that are core to the sport of rugby. The courage that Gareth and Ashwin both showed, and the incredible empathy and support they received from their team, are remarkable stories that we are proud to celebrate."

Longer versions of both films will also be released.

Yesterday, Dove launched its Rugby World Cup campaign, which took a similar theme by playing on what it said were the key 'rugby values' of teamwork, camaraderie and family through the campaign.

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