Wales international prop Henry Thomas signs for Scarlets

Rob LloydNews

Scarlets can confirm the signing of Wales international prop Henry Thomas.

Thomas, who has been named in Warren Gatland’s squad for this month’s Test against South Africa and the tour of Australia, will link up with the Scarlets ahead of the 2024-25 season.

The 32-year-old tight-head has been playing with French side Castres Olympique in the Top 14 having joined from Montpellier in January.

Thomas played seven internationals for England, but through World Rugby regulations was eligible to switch allegiances to Wales, who he qualifies for through his Swansea-born father.

He won his first Wales cap in the 2023 World Cup warm-up match against England, then featured against Australia and Georgia during the global tournament in France.

Thomas, who stands at 6ft 1in and 119kg, started his career at Sale Sharks before moving to Bath, where he played for seven years.

Thomas said: “I spoke to Peely a few months ago and the way he spoke about his vision for the club and I know the style of rugby they play, it made it an easy decision for me.

“There is so much quality in this Scarlets squad, I’m looking forward to seeing what I can add and hopefully help to compete at the top of the URC and in Europe.

“My memories of playing against Scarlets in Europe when I was at Bath were always tough ones. They had a strong pack and played quick exciting rugby, I’m excited to be a part of that.”

Scarlets head coach Dwayne Peel said: “Henry will bring vast experience from the top level in England and more recently in France, where he has played a lot of games in the Top 14 for Castres and Montpellier this season.

“He is a powerful scrummager who is also a strong carrier and will add further depth to our front-row resources. 

“Bringing in an international forward can only help the young group we have at the Scarlets. We have two young tight-heads in Harri O’Connor and Sam Wainwright and an exciting group of young front-rowers coming through our academy.

“We look forward to welcoming Henry to Llanelli for pre-season.”

Thomas is the Scarlets’ fifth new addition to the squad for the 2024-25 campaign following the signings of hooker Marnus van der Merwe (Toyota Cheetahs), prop Alec Hepburm (Exeter Chiefs), second row Max Douglas (Yokohama Canon Eagles) and full-back Ellis Mee (Nottingham).

Sam Lousi, Tom Rogers, Harri O’Connor, Ben Williams and Dan Davis have also signed new contracts with the club.

Further announcements will be made over the coming weeks.