Frank Maloney feared being outed

London: Former boxing promoter Frank Maloney said she told a Sunday newspaper she was living as a woman because the story might have been revealed by someone else.

Maloney revealed she now wanted to be known as Kellie in an interview with Britain`s Sunday Mirror last week.

Speaking to ITV`s Good Morning Britain television programme on Wednesday, the 61-year-old said other papers were threatening to `out` her and that "previously transgender people have been ridiculed in the press and I didn`t want that to happen to me and I didn`t want that to happen to others".

Maloney, who managed Britain`s former world heavyweight champions Lennox Lewis, quit boxing in October.

"I`ve got all these crusades that I`d like to do, but the most important one is I`d really want to help the transgender community because they`ve really rallied around me."

Maloney said going public with her story felt "like a complete release" and that she had known she was "different from everyone else" from the age of three or four.

Asked about any negative reactions, Maloney replied: "I received so many of them in my boxing business they`d just be like water off a duck`s back now to me. Really, that life has prepared me for this transition."

After the Sunday Mirror published Maloney`s story, a supportive Lewis said: "I was just as shocked as anyone at the news about my former promoter and my initial thought was that it was a wind-up.

"However, having taken some time to read Kellie`s statements, I understand better what she, and others in similar situations, are going through. I think that all people should be allowed to live their lives in a way that brings them harmony and inner peace.

"I respect Kellie`s decision and say that if this is what brings about true happiness in her life, than so be it," he added.