Tony Sutherland: interview

DARREN Sutherland's manager has demanded that his family stop pointing the blame at his training team for the boxer's suicide saying it's giving him "nightmares".

Speaking from his home in England, Frank Maloney lashed out at The Late Late Show presenter Ryan Tubridy who he labeled a "tabloid journalist" for referring to 'legal issues' at the end of Friday night's interview with Sutherland's father Tony.

He also answered criticisms on why his team had not told the Sutherland family of Darren's suicide, saying they were acting on the direct instructions of police.

In an interview with the Sunday Tribune, Maloney said it was time for his family to stop playing blame games and to collectively find out why Sutherland took his own life.

"Stop trying to blame people and let's, all together, try to find the reason why. We have to learn from this," he said.

"I feel for the family but I find it hard to believe they keep trying to throw the blame over here to the boxer's training team. It's all giving me nightmares.

"It's affecting my work; it's affecting my personal life with my family."

Maloney and his legal team had a live feed of Friday's interview as Tony Sutherland broke his silence on his son's untimely death.

While Maloney stresses he has nothing but sympathy for the family, he has felt the need to respond to "wrong statements" and protect the reputation of his team.

He hit out at Tubridy for ambiguously telling his audience that there was a "complicated, legally tender" aspect to the story that could not be discussed.

"We are very annoyed by the presenter of that show saying at the end that there is an elephant in the room and some legal issues," said Maloney.

"That is something that we will be writing to him about. I told the producer last night and he listened to me. I thought it was quite a wild card to throw in and it was just tabloid journalism.

"There is no legal end from our side; there is no legal end apart from the coroner's court."

Central to concerns expressed by Sutherland was that neither Maloney nor anyone in his team or company had tried to contact them after his son's body was discovered.

Maloney has explained that this was not in his control, but that they were acting on instructions.

"I can hold my hands up to say that I never made a call to the family – I accept that because I was told not to," he said.

"The police informed us not to get in touch with the family, that they wanted to do it right. They said there is a proper way to do it."

He said he had no idea how a leak made it onto the internet but that when Sutherland's body was found the police cordoned off the road, attracting local press.

A team of investigators is now examining the boxer's 'behaviour patterns' in the run-up to his death and when he is fully recovered from heart surgery, Maloney said he would be willing to come to Ireland to answer more questions. "My team are totally in the clear; they did more to help him than anything else," he said.