Fury vacates world titles, has license suspended

Thu Oct 13, 2016 6:51am EDT
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By Alan Baldwin

LONDON (Reuters) - British heavyweight Tyson Fury has had his boxing license suspended, hours after he announced he was relinquishing his two world titles to focus on his mental health.

Robert Smith, general secretary of the British Boxing Board of Control (BBBC) that oversees professional boxing in Britain, told Reuters the decision was made pending investigation of anti-doping and medical issues.

Fury revealed the turmoil in his private life last week when he told Rolling Stone magazine that he had been taking cocaine and bingeing on alcohol as a consequence of depression.

The 28-year-old WBO and WBA champion has not fought since beating Ukrainian Wladimir Klitschko to win the titles in November 2015, and he announced on Wednesday that his 11-month reign was over.

"I won the titles in the ring and I believe that they should be lost in the ring, but I'm unable to defend at this time and I have taken the hard and emotional decision to now officially vacate my treasured world titles," Fury said in statement released by his promoter Mick Hennessy.

"(I) wish the next in-line contenders all the very best as I now enter another big challenge in my life which I know, like against Klitschko, I will conquer."

Tyson's points victory over Klitschko in Duesseldorf, Germany, was one of the biggest upsets in the long history of heavyweight boxing.

It was a first defeat for Klitschko in 11 years and the now 40-year-old Ukrainian, who has accused Fury of "dragging boxing through the mud", immediately demanded a re-match.   Continued...

FILE PHOTO - Boxing - Wladimir Klitschko v Tyson Fury WBA, IBF & WBO Heavyweight Title's - Esprit Arena, Dusseldorf, Germany - 28/11/15Tyson Fury celebrates winning the fightAction Images via Reuters / Lee SmithLivepic/File Photo