That wild boar keeps catching up with Tyson Fury… in 2015 he topped the world nine months after failing a drugs test, now his career is on the ropes again as a potential eight-year ban hangs over him
- Tyson Fury fought Wladimir Klitschko in 2015 and produced a stunning display
- That was to be his last fight for three years as he battled demons and UKAD ban
- New allegations from a farmer has thrown Fury’s future into doubt once more
- UKAD are investigating the allegations that farmer was offered £25,000 to lie
For a time, the life of Tyson Fury centred around a bore and a boar.
In November 2015, the 6ft 9in giant travelled to Dusseldorf to challenge Wladimir Klitschko for the unified heavyweight titles.
It was the Briton’s first world title fight. For the man in the opposite corner, it was No 28.
Tyson Fury is back in great shape and beat Deontay Wilder in their heavyweight Vegas rematch
Just weeks after the victory in America, Fury’s career is back hanging in the balance once more
By 2015, the Ukrainian had rebuilt after several early career wobbles and was unbeaten in more than a decade.
Though Fury had shown promise in his first 24 fights, he had also shown himself to be vulnerable and prone to undulating fortunes.
By the time the first bell rang, Klitschko was widely expected to extend his reign – particularly on adopted home soil.
But in one of the great British performances of recent times, Fury outfoxed the champion over 12 rounds.
The fight produced few fireworks and none of the rolling emotion which accompanied Klitschko’s 2017 fight with Anthony Joshua.
Instead, Fury turned it into a snooze fest. With feints and clever footwork, Fury rendered the champion gun-shy in his new backyard.
An overweight Fury (left) poses with British boxing legend Ricky Hatton during training
After the result was confirmed by the three judges, Fury took to the mic, serenading his wife and the arena with a rendition of Aerosmith’s I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing.
It would be the last time fight fans would see their new king between the ropes for nearly three years.
Rare glimpses of Fury over the following weeks and months would reveal a man descending deep into a downward spiral of drugs, drink and depression.
Then in June 2016, his life inside the ring was turned upside down, too, when charges were brought by UK Anti-Doping against both Fury and his heavyweight cousin Hughie.
Nine months before that glorious night in Dusseldorf, both fighters had tested positive for the banned steroid nandrolone.
The heavyweight ballooned up to 28st during more than two-and-a-half years out of the ring
Fury’s win over Klitschko in 2015 (pictured) was allowed to stand after a UKAD suspension
They denied wrongdoing and insisted the adverse results came after they ate uncastrated wild boar.
The pair were provisionally suspended by UKAD only for those to be lifted on appeal.
The win over Klitschko was allowed to stand, too.
In fact, the rivals were due to meet once more in July 2016, only for Fury to pull out – citing an ankle injury – on the same day UKAD announced their charge.
Soon the already muddied waters turned a darker shade of brown.
In September 2016, Fury failed a test for cocaine and later admitted using the drug as he struggled with mental health problems.
Fury poses with his team back in 2015, before he spent nearly three years out of the ring
Fury’s entourage are alleged to have paid a farmer £25,000 to lie on the boxer’s behalf
That same month, it was alleged, Fury also missed a test. At worst, both offences carried a respective four-year ban.
And over the next 15 months, the Furys’ battle with UKAD was expensive and contentious.
It cost the body nearly £600,000 – around seven per cent of their annual budget.
There was alleged collateral damage on the other side, too.
Last week, 70-year-old farmer Martin Carefoot told Sportsmail he was approached at his farmhouse near Preston in November 2016 — around five months after the charge — by a friend asking a favour on behalf of Fury’s entourage.
Carefoot says he lied when he submitted two written statements to the Furys’ legal team in 2017 to say he had supplied the fighters with the uncastrated wild boar.
As the battle with UKAD rumbled on, Fury found himself in hot water with the British Boxing Board of Control, who suspended his licence amid his ongoing struggles outside the ring.
Fury celebrates with the WBA, IBF, WBO and IBO titles after beating Klitschko back in 2015
For the failed tests, Tyson (right) and Hughie (centre) accepted a backdated two-year ban
For a while, Fury’s future was in limbo. As he flirted with a return to the ring, he failed to turn up for one hearing and a separate anti-doping tribunal had to be halted after only one day because of a conflict of interest.
By December 2017, the case came to a head and a compromise was made.
For the failed tests, Tyson and Hughie accepted drug bans of two years – backdated to 2015 and expiring the month the deal was struck.
The charge relating to Tyson’s alleged refusal to take a test was dropped.
Given the potential sanctions both could have faced, the punishment was widely considered lenient.
UKAD hadn’t helped themselves. They later admitted they had been wrong not to notify the Furys that they would be charged. This hindered the fighters’ chance to fully prepare a scientific defence based on contamination.
Fury was back on top of the world after his Wilder win, but could now face an eight-year ban
By Fury’s long-awaited return to the ring in June 2018, the case had been buried by a tidal wave of support for the heavyweight, who became an advocate for those battling mental demons.
And soon his fists began to make the headlines once more. Never more so than in Las Vegas last month, when Fury defied pre-fight predictions and out-gunned the heavy handed Wilder.
Suddenly he was atop the world once more. But once more that boar wasn’t far behind.
UKAD are investigating the allegations that a member of Team Fury offered Carefoot £25,000 to lie. Now a possible eight-year ban hangs over their heads once more.
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