Greg Rutherford threatens to pull out of BBC Sports award over Tyson Fury argument
Olympic track and field star Greg Rutherford has threatened to pull out of the BBC’s Sports Personality of the Year award if Tyson Fury remains in the shortlist.
The Belfast Telegraph reports that Rutherford has told the BBC that he will not remain on the shortlist with Fury, over comments about women and linking homosexuality to paedophilia.
According to the paper, BBC executives fear that others will drop out of the race if Rutherford does.
The 29-year-old, who rose to fame during the 2012 London Olympics, was nominated for the award after he won gold at the World Championships in Beijing earlier this year.
World Heavyweight champion Fury has refused to apologise for claiming that once homosexuality, paedophilia and abortion are all made legal, the world will end.
The boxer also claims to have “evidence” that paedophilia was legalised by a fictional ‘Gay Rights Act 1977’ – but the BBC has resisted pressure to rescind his Sports Personality of the Year nomination.
The boxer wrote: “Hopefully I don’t win @BBCSPOTY as I’m not the best roll model in the world for the kids, give it to someone who would appreciate it [prayer emojis].”
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However, he also added: “I’ve got more personality than all the other competitors put together in this years @BBCSPOTY who can compete with my sporting achievement!
“The Gypsy King, & the heavyweight champion of the world, will not be silenced I’ll always speak my mind, Like it or lump it, in Jesus name.”
Despite his comments, the BBC says it will not alter the nominations.
A spokesperson said: “The Sports Personality shortlist is compiled by a panel of industry experts and is based on an individual’s sporting achievement – it is not an endorsement of an individual’s personal beliefs either by the BBC or members of the panel.”
Last week a challenger to Tyson Fury’s heavyweight champ title warned him to watch his mouth.
BBC News presenter Clive Myrie, during a live newspaper review on the BBC News channel branded Fury a “dickhead” after checking that it was “after the watershed”.