New Year Honours 2019: OBE for Tour de France winner Geraint Thomas

Geraint Thomas after winning the Tour de France
Geraint Thomas won two stages of the 2018 Tour de France

Tour de France winner Geraint Thomas been awarded an OBE in the 2019 New Year Honours list.

The 32-year-old Team Sky rider became the first Welshman and only the third Briton to win road cycling's biggest prize.

Thomas receives an OBE for services to cycling.

Double world triathlon champion Helen Jenkins and former England and Glamorgan batsman Matthew Maynard have also been honoured.

Jenkins, 34, has been awarded an MBE for services to Triathlon.

Maynard, currently interim head coach of Glamorgan, also receives an MBE for services to sport and charity.

Geraint Thomas' tweet

Cardiff-born Thomas' Tour de France victory in July was the sixth time in seven years a Brit had won having previously supported team-mates Chris Froome and Sir Bradley Wiggins in their Le Tour wins.

His Tour de France victory came in his ninth appearance - one fewer than the record for most appearances before winning.

"This is an amazing honour," Thomas said.

"2018 will always be a year I remember for everything I achieved around both the Dauphine and especially the Tour.

"This is the icing on the cake and I am so grateful to everyone who played a part in helping me get recognised once again."

Between 2007 and 2012, Thomas won two Olympic and three world team pursuit titles on the track and won Commonwealth Games road race gold in 2014.

Helen Jenkins
Helen Jenkins has competed at three Olympic Games

In December Thomas was voted BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2018 having also been named BBC Cymru Wales Sports Personality of the Year 2018.

Jenkins from Bridgend is the highest achieving British female triathlete in history.

She was ITU World Champion in 2008 and 2011 and has represented Great Britain at three Olympic Games.

Maynard represented England in four Test matches and 14 One-Day Internationals and was captain of Glamorgan's County Championship winning side in 1997.

Born in Oldham but raised on Anglesey, Maynard was assistant coach when England regained the Ashes in 2005 for the first time in 18 years.

He had three successful years as head coach of the Nashua Titans in South Africa and had a spell as director of cricket at Somerset before returning to Glamorgan.

Matthew Maynard
Matthew Maynard made his Glamorgan first class debut in 1985

Following the tragic death in 2012 of son Tom, himself a cricketer with Surrey, Maynard set up the Tom Maynard Trust.

It was established to help the development of aspiring disadvantaged cricketers and other sportspeople who require support has helped and educated over 1,000 individuals and handed out over £500,000 in grants.

"I'm amazingly proud and thrilled to bits," said Maynard.

"The initial target of the Trust was to try and raise a £250,000 over 55 months and we've now given out more than double that. It continues to be supported really well.

"Tom was living his dream and the Trust tries to help young sports people to live their own dreams. The stuff that we do would have made Tom very proud.

"There are young players coming through who probably wouldn't have heard of Tom so it's important for us they understand Tom and know what dangers are out there as well."

Former Football Association of Wales councillor Ray Smiles is awarded an MBE for services to football and young people in Wales.

The 88-year-old was an apprentice at Everton as a youngster and has been involved with Garw FC for over 60 years.

He is a serving member of the Management Committee of the Welsh Football League, having been elected in 1969.

He was elected to the Council of the Football Association of Wales in 1995, and was made a Life Councillor in 2016, having served 21 years.

Nicola Phillips, the Chef de Mission of Team Wales' most successful Commonwealth Games campaign on Australia's Gold Coast in April, was also honoured with an OBE.

Dr Phillips, a Professor in Sport and Exercise Physiotherapy at Cardiff University, was honoured for services to physiotherapy.

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