Lennox Lewis has spoken out in support of his former manager Kellie Maloney.
The legendary boxing manager and promoter, formerly known as Frank Maloney, came out as transgender on Sunday (August 10).
The 61-year-old is now living as a woman and is preparing to undergo gender reassignment surgery.
Lewis – who was managed by Maloney between 1981 and 2001 – told The Sun: “The great thing about life and boxing is that you never know what to expect.
“This world 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.
“However, having taken some time to read Kellie’s statement, I understand better what she, and others in similar situations are going through. I think all people should be allowed to live in a way that brings harmony and inner peace.
“I respect Kellie’s decision and say if this is what brings about true happiness in her life, then so be it.”
Speaking about her transition, Maloney said: “I took my Facebook down and my Twitter account so that I could transition peacefully. The suicide rates from the pressure on a transsexual woman are very high and I didn’t want to get caught up in it. I hope society will be open-minded. I know I could have done my job in boxing as a female.”