Hughie Fury has opened up about his struggles with a rare form of acne he believes stalled his career, and is convinced now it is cured he is ready to win a world heavyweight title.
The 22-year-old, Tyson Fury's younger cousin, is expected to be confirmed as WBO title holder Joseph Parker's next challenger in the coming week.
A world title fight would represent significant progress after a frustrating period in his career, as well as the chance to reclaim one of the belts his cousin lost through his battle with depression.
Hughie Fury last fought when earning his 20th professional victory against Fred Kassi in London last April but has since been consumed by treating the long-term skin condition conglobate acne.
The painful, energy-draining affair that had begun before his professional debut in 2013 had led to him considering his future in boxing, and only since being cured by a specialist in Harley Street does he believe he will truly thrive.
"I went to a skin specialist and he said: 'I can't believe you have been fighting in this condition'," said Fury.
"He took blood tests.
"He told me the bad infected blood basically poisons the insides, affects your immune system and you are always fatigued.
"The type of acne I had, in the olden days they used to bring them in and put them in hospital beds. That's how bad it was.
"I never had one good training camp, about three weeks before a fight I would have to stop doing anything to get my strength back.
"It was horrific, it can really do your confidence in. You would try and put a shirt on and it would be covered in blood.
"It was painful, every time I sparred my T-shirt would be soaked with blood, coming from my chest, my back. I would just chuck it in the bin.
"You can even see it from some of my fights, pumping out of my back. I was in a bad state but now it is sorted.
"I've had it since I was 15. I thought it was teenage acne so it never really bothered me, but then it kept getting worse. Before I fought Fred Kassi I had cold sores all around my mouth.
"My face was swollen with acne; that was the worst it has ever been."
There was a point early in Hughie's career, before Tyson proved himself in defeating Wladimir Klitschko, that the younger cousin was considered the more natural fighter of the two.
Having left school at 11 to concentrate on boxing, his decision to do so would have left him with few options had he proved unable to fight on.
"There were times when I wanted to quit altogether," he said. "It's been every single training camp I have had, because I was so tired.
"People say things like (the acne exists because I'm taking steroids). But if I took steroids, I would be a bit better muscled.
"The medication was quite hard, because I was always tired and sleeping.
"It made all the skin soft; a jab to the face I would have been cut. I finished about two months ago."
In addition to any physical scars, mental ones can perhaps be seen in the way the quieter Hughie far from demonstrates his older cousin's confidence.
He is similarly ambitious, however, and said of Tyson: "He's good, in a better place. Hopefully he will be back this year.
"I've not seen much of him, but he says he has been ticking over, doing a few runs with his family. Hopefully he will get his head screwed on and come back stronger.
"The dream is for both of us to rule the heavyweight division; that is what I've always wanted."
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