Tyson Fury has claimed that his beliefs on religion, race and sexuality were misrepresented in a recent Mail on Sunday article written by Oliver Holt.
The article, which was published three weeks before Fury’s world heavyweight title win over Wladimir Klitschko, contained some rather troubling quotes attributed to the Mancunian giant. The fighter allegedly predicted that the end of the world was fast approaching, before identifying homosexuality, paedophilia and abortion as catalysts for this inevitable apocalypse.
“There are only three things that need to be accomplished before the devil comes home: one of them is homosexuality being legal in countries, one of them is abortion and the other one’s paedophilia. Who would have thought in the 50s and 60s that those first two would be legalised?”
“When I say paedophiles can be made legal, that sounds like crazy talk doesn’t it? But back in the 50s and early 60s, for them first two to be made legal would have been looked on as a crazy man again. If I would have told you 120 years ago, that a 1000-tonne aeroplane is going to float through the sky, a piece of steel — ludicrous”.
The words were so bizarre, that the newspaper ran with the headline “Is Tyson Fury fit to fight Wladimir Klitschko for the world heavyweight title?”
In the aftermath of Fury’s historic victory, their were many who were determined not to allow the boxer’s sporting success to overshadow these controversial remarks.
British MP Chris Bryant tweeted that he would not be partaking in the celebrations, and suggested that comments of this nature were potentially dangerous to impressionable young people.
I'm not celebrating Tyson Fury's win. His aggressive style of foul homophobia is precisely the kind that leads to young gay suicides.
— Chris Bryant (@RhonddaBryant) November 29, 2015
While The New York Post ran a piece entitled “Boxer who dethroned Klitschko is a Bible-thumping bigot”.
On Tuesday morning, however, Fury denied that he had made the comments attributed to him in the article and accused Holt of misquoting him. Speaking on RTE mid-morning radio show Today with Sean O’Rourke, the new king of boxing’s traditional glamour division claimed that this was simply a case of the newspaper trying to shift copies.
“It’s newspapers trying to sell papers on writing bad things about me”, said Fury. “I don’t have any hate for anybody”.
“I’m not homophobic, I’m not racist. I’m not against any people. All I have for people is love. At the end of the day, we are all brothers and sisters in god. What people do is none of my business”.
Moving away from this sensitive issue, Fury also spoke about potential venues for a likely rematch with the now former champion, Klitschko.
Among the sites listed by the fighter, who is of Irish travelling stock, was Dublin’s Croke Park, which he claimed was a place he had long dreamed of boxing.
“I don’t know where it is going to be. I always said I would like to fight at Croke Park. Maybe that can be a reality one day”.
“One of them was Madison Square Garden and I did that one. One of them was Old Trafford and I haven’t done that one. And the other one is Croke Park. They are the three venues I wanted to box in – I wasn’t really interested in Las Vegas and all of them places. The three I always said was Croke Park, United and Madison Square Garden”.