Promoter Frank Warren has revealed Tyson Fury’s hopes of a return to action this summer are hanging in the balance.
Fury is back in training following a year and a half away from the sport and had pencilled in July 8 for a return on pal Billy Joe Saunders’ undercard.
Due to a pending UK Anti-Doping decision on an alleged failed test from 2015, which was due to be heard this week, Warren has outlined Fury could be made to wait until the end of the year for a ruling.
“(If it drags on with UKAD then the hearing) won’t be heard until October. It’s a liberty,” Warren told PA Sport.
“There’s going to be a scream about that; that can’t be right. The man’s got a living to get and this thing took place in 2015. It’s disgraceful. You’ve either got a case or you haven’t got a case.
“‘I’ve had a test, I’m positive or I’m negative. If I’m positive and I’m just over, this is the reason why’. Why does it drag on, from 2015?
“I don’t know when the (British Boxing Board of Control) will come in. You’ve got to ask them that. They thought this was all settled in 2015.
“If (UKAD) chuck it out, he’s on the card (July 8, when Billy Joe Saunders defends his WBO middleweight title against Georgia’s Avtandil Khurtsidze in London). I spoke to (Fury) and he’s training hard.
“(UKAD) have got a problem. He’s 28 years of age: boxing’s a young man’s game, he’s entitled to make a living. If he’s done wrong then get it over with. How can this be right?
“Somebody’s got to intervene, even if it’s the minister for sport (Tracey Crouch). This on any level can’t be right.”
A possible clash with Anthony Joshua in April 2018 now looks a serious doubt for Fury, especially now that Wladimir Klitschko has exercised his rematch clause.
As WBN exclusively revealed on Tuesday, Joshua has asked for special dispensation to avoid a mandatory with Kubrat Pulev and face Klitschko for a second time, leaving any Fury fight off the menu until at least late in 2018.
A ban from the UKAD would complicate things even more as Fury attempts to piece together his career after sinking into a drug and alcohol-fuelled depression on the back of what should have been his greatest night against Klitschko in November 2015.