1. ITV Report

Lennox Lewis: I respect Kellie Maloney's decision to have a sex change

Retired world champion Lennox Lewis has spoken in support of his former boxing promoter Frank Maloney, who is undergoing a sex change and is now living as a woman named Kellie.

Retired world champion Lennox Lewis has spoken in support of his former boxing promoter Frank Maloney. Credit: LennoxLewis/Facebook

The undisputed Heavyweight Boxing Champion, who retired in 2004, said he "respects Kellie's decision" but was "as shocked as anyone" when he heard the news.

The 41-year-old posted his support on Facebook:

I was just as shocked as anyone at the news about my former promoter and my initial thought was that it was a wind up. The great thing about life, and boxing, is that, day to day, you never know what to expect.

This world we live in isn't always cut and dried or black and white, and coming from the boxing fraternity, I can only imagine what a difficult decision this must be for Kellie (formerly ...Frank Maloney).

However, having taken some time to read Kellie's statements, I understand better what she, and others in similar situations, are going through. I think that ALL people should be allowed to live their lives in a way that brings them harmony and inner peace.

I respect Kellie's decision and say that if this is what brings about true happiness in her life, than so be it. #LiveAndLetLive

– Lewis

Peckham-born Maloney, 61, who helped Lewis become Britain’s first undisputed world heavyweight champion for nearly a century, revealed the change in an interview with the Sunday Mirror.

The former boxing promoter is now living life as a woman named Kellie Maloney. Credit: PA

Maloney, who guided Lewis to the world heavyweight title in 1993, retired after 30 year as a promoter last October.