British world heavyweight champion Tyson Fury has vehemently denied doping allegations after the Sunday Mirror reported he was being investigated by UK Anti-Doping.

The Sunday Mirror reported that traces of a banned anabolic steroid were “allegedly discovered” in a sample taken from Fury before he beat Wladimir Klitschko last year. The newspaper reported unacceptable levels of Nandrolone were found in the sample. The 27-year-old caused a big upset when he beat Klitschko on a unanimous decision in November to inflict the 40-year-old Ukrainian’s first loss in 11 years.

In a statement issued by the boxer’s promoter Hennessy Sports, it was said that Tyson Fury absolutely denies any allegation of doping. It was further added the British world heavyweight champion looks forward to recovering from his injury and defending his titles against Wladimir Klitschko in October. Tyson was expected to take on Klitschko again on July 9 in the Manchester Arena but the fight was postponed due to a serious ankle injury.

Fury headed out to a bar in the French city of Nice instead of keeping a low profile after the doping allegations hit headlines where he bought drinks for a bar crammed with English football fans.

Hughie Fury, also a boxer and a cousin of Tyson, is also reportedly under investigation. Tyson could lose his title belts and face a lengthy ban, if found guilty. Both Fury and his cousin have denied any wrongdoing.

Sophie Ashcroft, a spokesperson for UK Anti-Doping (UKAD), said UK Anti-Doping does not discuss or disclose details of any cases until due legal process has been completed or a respondent chooses to put the information into the public domain. The spokesperson added this is to protect the rights and privacy of all involved and to ensure that a case is not subjected to unnecessary prejudice. It was further added by the spokesperson that it is important to note that an anti-doping rule violation is only deemed to have been committed once the legal process, including any appeals, has been completed and added that details of a violation will be made available on the UKAD website at that point.

The British professional boxer defeated Klitschko to become the unified WBA (Super), IBF, WBO, IBO, The Ring magazine and lineal heavyweight champion. Tyson was however stripped of the IBF title after his inability to unable to grant a fight to their mandatory challenger, Vyacheslav Glazkov, because he agreed to a rematch with Klitschko. Fury has represented both Ireland and England as an amateur and won the ABA championship in 2008 before he turned professional later that year. The boxer was nominated for the BBC Sports Personality of the Year 2015 shortlist after winning the world titles but attracted significant criticism in the media relating to statements he had made which his critics called “sexist and homophobic.” In 2013, he told an interviewer before his first fight at Madison Square Garden that he would “hang” his own sister if she was promiscuous. Fury was fined £3,000 the same year after he called fellow boxers David Price and Tony Bellew “gay lovers”. The Fury team released a training camp update video in May 2016 that Fury voicing opposition to transgenderism and also to bestiality and rape but suggested they might eventually be legalized because of the increasing number of formerly taboo practices becoming accepted.

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