Former boxer and trainer Barry McGuigan has called on boxing authorities to fund the establishment of a new foundation to help boxers who are experiencing mental ill health.
McGuigan made this call in the wake of news this week that world heavyweight champion Tyson Fury has depression and taken cocaine in a bid to deal with the condition.
Speaking to BBC Radio5Live, McGuigan said he was “genuinely concerned” about Fury, who pulled out of his rematch with Wladimir Klitschko on October 29 because of his mental health issues. WBC cruiserweight champion Tony Bellew has said that Fury “is not well” and “needs help”.
McGuigan added that the sport of boxing has “been blind” to competitors experiencing mental illness. "The health of the boxers is really important to me," he said. "There is no help available to boxers for depression and mental health issues which is something I really want to concentrate on.”
He said he would be "happy to help in whatever way" he could, including heading a mental health clinic for boxers.
"There are colossal sums in some of the fights and there is plenty of money available, of which some should be set aside for mental health issues. We definitely need to address it.
"Maybe it is time for all the sporting governing bodies to sit down and start thinking about a clinic of some kind which is available. We need to do it for a cheap rate for guys who don't earn a fortune."