Frank Bruno announces boxing return live on TV amid concerns for his health

“I haven’t got a choice.” Frank Bruno talks openly about depression in his latest interview.

Frank Bruno wants to make a boxing return
Heavyweight champ Frank Bruno has vowed to make a boxing return. Image Picture by John Gichigi/Getty Images

Frank Bruno has announced a return to boxing in an open and honest interview with This Morning.

The 54-year-old former world heavyweight champion made the revelation during a discussion about his battle with depression.

Bruno was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 2003 after he was taken from his Essex home under the Mental Health Act.

When presenter Phillip Schofield asked Bruno if his comeback was a good idea, Bruno replied: “I haven’t got a choice. I train everyday. I get so-called boxing promoters saying that Anthony Joshua can knock me out in two rounds. I’m not even dead.”

Bruno also spoke about his concerns over medication, saying that he thinks mental illness shouldn’t be treated with drugs.

“Now they’re just filling up people with drugs and making them like zombies, like the Michael Jackson video coming out of the grave,” Bruno insisted. “It’s wrong what they’re doing.

“They government are the biggest drug dealers in the world and it’s crooked.”

Bruno said that the only way to control his mood is to focus his energy in the gym. He also criticised the NHS and government’s handling of his illness.

“The aftercare was rubbish. If they’re treating me like that, what about the other people they’re treating?”

This Morning viewers were quick to voice concerns about Bruno’s well-being on social media.

Bruno won 40 of his 45 bouts, with 38 of his victories ending in a knockout. At the height of his powers he won the WBC heavyweight title in 1995 by beating American fighter Oliver McCall in a clash at Wembley Stadium.

He last fought in 1996. In his first defence as champion, he was beaten in three rounds by Mike Tyson. Bruno suffered a severe eye injury and was advised not to fight again. He didn’t mention his eye injury on This Morning.

Readers who wish to discuss their mental health can contact Samaritans on 08457 90 90 90 or Samaritans.org, or Mind on 0300 123 3393 and Mind.org.uk.

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Loaded digital media manager Simon Reynolds has written about film and entertainment for various leading websites since 2008. Follow Simon at @simonreyn

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