Sadly, the trainer wasn't the only figure from the boxing world to cause controversy. British boxer Frankie Gavin was also forced to delete a tweet after writing that Flanagan "has to win" or risk being "bantered for life" for losing to a "gay lad."
Don't worry about my position. Fighting men I want to see. Not something else! #BOXING— peter fury. (@peterfury) November 26, 2016
"I have nothing against gay people, have gay friends. But if I lost to a gay lad I would get bantered for life by pals so Flanagan has to win," Gavin wrote, before deleting the tweet.
"I deleted that tweet because it hit some nerves; it wasn't my intention," he wrote.One person for whom Cruz's sexuality didn't seem to matter was his opponent, however. Revealing that his sister is also gay, in an interview with The Telegraph before the fight, Flanagan insisted he was more interested in Cruz's boxing ability than his personal life. "Fair play to him for coming out in such a tough sport and it might encourage others to come out," Flanagan said. "It doesn't make him any less of a man because he's gay."
Prior to the fight, Cruz - one of the first sportsmen to be inducted into the National Gay and Lesbian Sports Hall of Fame, in 2013 - said he hoped to inspire other gay athletes to follow their dreams and be themselves while doing so. "It's a big moment for me, my community and my country," he said. "It's very important, wonderful, that other people are interested in me as a role model. "People have told me I'm an inspiration for coming out of the closet. They want to be the same as me - not scared, only happy. "I want that other [gay] athletes are not scared to walk into the society. Don't be scared. Be happy with your life, and happy with your decision. All people are the same." More stories: Russell Tovey: ‘Being gay is the best thing that ever happened to me’ LGBT people are being 'targeted' with homophobic abuse outside London gay club— BBC Manchester Sport (@BBCMancSports) November 23, 2016