LONDON: New world heavyweight champion Tyson Fury has sparked fresh controversy with derogatory remarks about women, including Olympic and world heptathlete champion Jessica Ennis-Hill.
“I believe a woman’s best place is in the kitchen and on her back, that’s my personal belief. Making me a good cup of tea, that’s what I believe,” the 27-year-old Fury is heard saying in a video interview.
Asked his opinion on women in boxing, Fury talked about the ring girls rather than athletes.
“I think they are very nice when they’re walking around that ring holding them cards,” he said.
Asked about British heptathlete Ennis-Hill in the interview, he said: “I think she’s good, she’s won quite a few medals for Britain, she slaps up good as well, when she’s got a dress on she looks quite fit.”
The YouTube footage was uploaded on November 25.
Fury responded to the storm by sending a message to Ennis-Hill’s official Twitter account that claimed he didn’t see what all the fuss was about.
“If I’m going to get in trouble for giving a woman a compliment what has the world come to, I said u look fit in a dress?” he tweeted.
In an interview in the Mail on Sunday last month, Fury drew widespread criticism for condemning the legalisation of homosexuality and abortion.
“My faith and my culture is based on the Bible,” he said.
The BBC has now come under immediate pressure to remove Fury from the list of nominations for its prestigious end-of-year Sports Personality of the Year award.
But a BBC spokesman defended its decision to shortlist the boxer saying this was “not an endorsement of an individual’s personal beliefs”.
“The Sports Personality shortlist is compiled by a panel of industry experts and is based on an individual’s sporting achievement,” the spokesman said.
A petition asking the BBC to remove Fury from the shortlist had attracted more than 45,000 signatures on Friday.
“The BBC clearly do not understand that by nominating Fury… they are putting him up as a role model to young people all over the UK and the world,” the petition’s founder, Scott Cuthbertson, said earlier.
Fury’s controversial comments came to light just days after the Englishman’s stunning victory over Wladimir Klitschko in Duesseldorf, which gave him the WBA, IBF and WBO titles and ended the Ukrainian’s nine-year reign as world champion.
Klitschko has already taken up his option for a rematch in the new year.