Mike Tyson used fake penis to pass drugs tests while on coke
Former boxer makes startling admission in autobiography to throw spotlight on drugs cheats
FORMER world heavyweight champion Mike Tyson has admitted that he used a fake penis filled with uncontaminated urine to avoid drugs testers during his career, and went into the ring while high on cocaine.
The revelations come in his autobiography Undisputed Truth, in which he confesses that he was taking coke and marijuna for a large part of his troubled career.
"I was a full-blown cokehead," he admits, and also reveals that he was taking drugs shortly before his shock defeat to Britsh boxer Danny Williams in 2004. Four years earlier he had resorted to using a device called a "whizzer" - a fake penis full of clean urine - after a fight against Lou Savarese in Glasgow.
He also admits taking cocaine before the famous press conference in 2002 when he attacked his opponent Lennox Lewis and bit him on the leg.
The Daily Telegraph describes the book as a "vivid portrait" of the life of a man who grew up on the streets of Brooklyn and became heavyweight champion of the world, a convicted rapist and one of sport’s most divisive figures.
Tyson's startling admission that he used a fake penis, rather more successfully than Richard E Grant's character in the film Withnail & I, comes after an Italian distance runner was caught trying the same trick in September.
Devis Licciardi's efforts to siphon clean urine through a fake organ failed when he was spotted by officials, reported the Telegraph. But it suggested that the practice might be widespread and added: "Fake penises are readily available on the internet and even come in different colours to match users’ skin colour, including white, black and Latino."
Tyson's admission of drug taking and the unusual methods he used to evade the testers will put the issue of drugs in sport back in the spotlight.
The revelations come as disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong embarks on what The Guardian calls a "media offensive", claiming that his lifetime ban for systematically cheating his way to seven Tour de France titles has led to a "massive personal loss of wealth".
And earlier this week Jamaica's most senior drug tester told the BBC that the country's recent rash of failed tests might be the "tip of an iceberg". So far this year former 100m record holder Asafa Powell, Olympic gold-medallist Sherone Simpson and several others have failed tests.