Frank Bruno, 59, reveals he ‘hit rock bottom’ and was split during lockdown after family raised concerns about excessive fitness training while trying to make a comeback in boxing
- Frank Bruno, 59, has revealed he was sectioned for six weeks during the lockdown
- The former heavyweight world champion stayed at Luton and Central Bedfordshire Hospital
- He said he was ‘hit rock bottom’ and felt like a prisoner in his own home in lockdown
Former world heavyweight boxing champion Frank Bruno has admitted he was sectioned after a slump during the lockdown.
Bruno, 59, said the loss of friends due to covid and lockdown stress led to him collapsing and being included under the Mental Health Act.
The former boxer, who has bipolar disorder, was taken by police to the mental health ward of Luton and Central Bedfordshire Hospital on June 28, 2020, and remained there for six weeks after fears for his safety grew, The Sun reports.
Frank said, “It’s been the hardest and most terrifying time of my life. I hit bottom and had a breakdown.
Former world heavyweight boxing champion Frank Bruno (file image) has admitted he was sanctioned during the coronavirus lockdown under the Mental Health Act
Frank, who struggled after quitting boxing, was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 1998 and was first sectioned in 2003.
The father of four, who had separated from wife Laura in 2001, added: ‘For my own safety and the safety of others, I was sectioned and taken back to the hospital. I had to face the fact that my illness had returned after years of keeping a lid on it. I had to fight for my sanity and there were times when I feared I wouldn’t make it through.’
Bruno also said being forced to stay home during the lockdown felt ten times scarier than entering the ring for a boxing match.
He said all the routine and structure in his life was gone when the lockdown was put in place, leaving him feeling like a prisoner in his own home.
However, friends and family began to worry about his safety after he began exercising excessively at the gym – intending to host boxing matches.
In addition, Bruno called his agent asking for a transfer of £60,000 so he could buy a car worth only a third of that value.
After his hospital stay, Bruno is now on medication – and he will reveal more in-depth details about his fight in a book due out next month, titled Frank Bruno: 60 Years A Fighter.
Bruno competed as a professional boxer between 1982 and 1996 and was crowned WBC heavyweight champion in 1995 after beating Oliver McCall.
And last month marked 25 years since Bruno reached the pinnacle of his sport, bursting with pride at Wembley Stadium after beating Oliver McCall to be crowned heavyweight world champion.
It was the fourth lucky streak for Bruno, who faced adversity and was determined to be labeled the best no matter how many times it took.
Throughout his glittering career, Bruno fought some of boxing’s biggest names, including Mike Tyson in 1989 and 1996 and Lennox Lewis in 1993.
Pictured: Frank Bruno takes on Mike Tyson in Las Vegas on February 25, 1989 for the WBC, WBA and IBF heavyweight titles
The match against Lewis was the first time in history that two British boxers would go head-to-head for the world heavyweight title.
Bruno retired not long after taking his world heavyweight title against McCall.
Part of the deal for the fight meant he was contractually obligated to face Mike Tyson, who defeated him after three rounds.
Tyson inflicted serious eye injuries on Bruno, with medical professionals advising him not to fight again or he would risk making the injury worse.