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Published: 08:55 | 13/10/16

Fury vacates world titles

Tyson Fury has vacated his WBO, WBA and IBO world heavyweight titles to focus fully on his recovery from depression.

The 28-year-old was due to defend the belts he won from Wladimir Klitschko last year against the same opponent in July but was forced to withdraw from the bout due to injury. A second rematch scheduled for October 29 has also been cancelled after Fury was declared 'medically unfit'

The British fighter faces losing his licence and a ban after admitting to taking cocaine in an interview in Rolling Stone magazine with the British Boxing Board of Control due to rule on the matter.

Having been unable to defend his title, Fury has voluntarily vacated the belts.

"I won the titles in the ring and I believe that they should be lost in the ring, but I'm unable to defend at this time and I have taken the hard and emotional decision to now officially vacate my treasured world titles and wish the next in-line contenders all the very best as I now enter another big challenge in my life which I know, like against Klitschko, I will conquer," Fury said in a statement.

"I feel that it is only fair and right and for the good of boxing to keep the titles active and allow the other contenders to fight for the vacant belts that I proudly won and held as the undefeated heavyweight champion of the world when I defeated the long-standing champion Wladimir Klitschko."

His promoters Hennessy Sports added: ''Out of respect for the governing bodies, the sport of boxing and the heavyweight division, Tyson has made the difficult decision to vacate the belts.

"This will also allow him the time and space to fully recover from his present condition without any undue pressure and with the expert medical attention he requires and his close family support."

Fury's decision to vacate the titles paves the way for a fight between Klitschko and Anthony Joshua with negotiations ongoing.

Conor McGregor will fight Eddie Alvarez for the lightweight belt at UFC 205 in New York on November 12 live on the eir Sport pack. The eir Sport pack is free to all eir broadband customers. To learn more about setting sport free visit www.eir.ie/sport .

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