A Thai boxer who posed on the cover of a gay magazine in his underwear is facing a year-long ban.

Worapoj Petchkoom, who is one of the country’s best hopes for a medal at the 2012 London Olympics, has said he did not know the magaine, Stage, was gay-related.

The Amateur Boxing Association of Thailand (ABAT) has called the shoot “inappropriate”.

ABAT president General Thaweep Jantharoj said: “We will question him. After we listen to him, we will mete out punishment.”

Petchkoom, 28, told the Joh Jai TV programme: “I thought it was an honour to be invited to grace the cover of a magazine on its third anniversary.

“I became sceptical when I was told to wear just underpants.

“They said everything was going to be okay because it would show my abdomen muscles.”

The boxer said he was told he would have to pay compensation if he left the shoot.

He has said he may have to abandon hopes of representing Thailand in the 2012 Olympics if he receives a ban.

Petchkoom denied being gay, saying he had a girlfriend. He also apologised to fans, saying it was a “life lesson”.