Haye calls for critics to lay off Whyte in absence of full facts
Former world champion says more information is needed.
Former world heavyweight champion David Haye has criticised people “jumping on the bandwagon” by condemning Dillian Whyte before any possible failed drugs test is officially confirmed.
Whyte has been provisionally suspended by the World Boxing Council pending an investigation into an adverse finding in a test prior to his recent bout against Oscar Rivas.
The Londoner was cleared to fight by UK Anti-Doping and the British Boxing Board of Control and went on to win the WBC’s interim title and the right to challenge champion Deontay Wilder after his unanimous decision win.
UK Anti-Doping officials have yet to comment on the matter while the BBBC said it deferred its anti-doping programme and sanctions to UKAD.
And former WBA champion Haye believes caution is needed until any misdemeanour is confirmed.
He told PA: “If it turns out to be incorrect, then there needs to be some compensation paid because it’s definitely hurt his brand, distracted him as a fighter and it’s potentially a terrible thing.
“Hopefully it all gets smoothed out, it’s also hurting boxing. Boxing doesn’t need headlines like this – particularly if they turn out to be wrong.”
Haye, currently competing in Goliath, the world’s biggest poker tournament outside of Las Vegas, added: “A lot of people have jumped on the bandwagon stating these alleged facts as real.
“Nobody is guilty until proven innocent – it’s the other way around.
“As far as I’m aware, from my limited sources, there was a hearing before the fight. Whoever was in that hearing was satisfied with whatever they heard and decided he was cleared to fight. Which means whatever happened in a test, he was still cleared.
“I’m going to reserve judgement until I have the facts.”
Last week Whyte wrote on Twitter: “I am so disappointed with the rubbish that has been said about me over the last few days.
“I have lawyers dealing with it and I have been told that I can’t talk about it for good legal reasons. I was cleared to fight and I won that fight fair and square. Thanks for the support.”