True to his word that he would retire before his 31st birthday in September, having already accomplished all he set out to do, former WBA heavy-weight champion David Haye announced today that he has quit the ring. However, his early bow out is not apparently for the reason previously given; and defiantly not because he has made an absolute show of himself recently.
Along with the retirement announcement, the London based fighter’s agent also released a document containing a catalogue of verbal, physical and emotional abuse allegedly suffered by the 6’ 4’’ pugilist during his time in the sport. The manuscript, claims Haye, is evidence of a glittering career cut short by relentless workplace bullying.
Extracts from the document, penned by Haye himself, read: ‘…I couldn’t go on anymore…I lived in total dread of attending work. Sometimes I would contemplate hurting myself so I wouldn’t have to go in…’
…each day would be the same. As soon as I arrived I would be asked to complete menial, repetitive tasks. I would be told to lift heavy objects and other arduous, back breaking duties. There was never any obvious practical use for what I was doing. I was also made to dance around in nothing but a pair of small shorts, while loud rock music was played in the background – all this, while at the same time being shouted at to “work harder,” and “move faster.” I can only assume that this practice was an attempt to ritually humiliate me.’
But worse was to come for Haye. The account goes on to describe how he would be routinely physically assaulted by colleagues and, occasionally, being sent to work abroad where he would be forced to toil under hot lights while being jeered at by drunken invited onlookers.
Sources in the publishing world have already leaked rumours of a ghost written memoir based on Haye’s harrowing account to be titled: ‘Hitting the Haye: A Tale of Bullying in the Workplace.’
Haye’s retirement follows the news last week that Britain’s second most famous heavy-weight, Audley Harrison, will be swapping his gloves for a piping bag, and opening his own cupcake kiosk in Covent Garden. Harrison has said since, ‘If I didn’t do it now, I never would.’