Anti-vax kickboxing champion dies after denying he had Covid-19

Frederic Sinistra, pictured here in hospital after contracting Covid.
Frederic Sinistra died after dicharging himself from hospital. Image: Twitter

A world-renowned kickboxing champion has died from Covid complications after he refused to acknowledge he had the virus and discharged himself from hospital.

Frederic Sinistra, known as The Undertaker in the kickboxing community, died at his home in Ciney, Belgium.

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The 41-year-old was admitted to hospital late last month after being forced to seek medical help from his coach.

The three-time world champion shared a series of photos of himself in intensive care using breathing tubes.

Sinistra said he had decided to treat the "little virus" by himself at home after leaving hospital in late November.

But he has since succumbed to the virus after suffering complications.

Sinistra had also publicly criticised government restrictions to contain Covid-19 in Belgium.

On November 26 he announced that a fight planned for December 4 had been cancelled, saying he was 'disgusted' after being forced to cancel the event.

"A warrior never abdicates, I will come back even stronger," he wrote.

He later wrote: "I was born premature and I will continue to fight to the death like a man without ever giving up and dying without regrets".

Three days before his death was announced by his wife, Sinistra responded to fan comments on Facebook.

"Thank you for all your support. I'm home recovering, as I should," he wrote.

"I will come back a thousand times stronger."

Frederic Sinistra, pictured here in hospital in Belgium.
Frederic Sinistra had discharged himself from hospital. Image: Facebook

Kickboxing world pays tribute to Frederic Sinistra

Sinistra won world and European heavyweight kickboxing titles throughout his career, while also claiming a national title in Belgium in 2004.

He was 39-9 in his professional career and was once branded "Belgium's strongest man".

Former coach Fabian Pavone was among those to pay tribute to Sinistra, describing him as a "force of nature with a heart of gold."

Friend Jordan Sferrazza posted: "He was a golden guy. I will never forget him.

"He was the strongest in Belgium in the heavyweight category."

The Belgian government imposed new measures starting on Sunday that ordered cultural venues like movie theatres and concert halls to close.

Some venues defied the ban, and thousands of performers, event organisers and others demonstrated on Sunday in Brussels against the decision, carrying signs reading "The Show Must Go On" or "No Culture No Future."

They accuse the Belgian government of double standards because it allowed Christmas markets, with their boisterous crowds and mulled wine drinking, to stay open, along with restaurants and bars.

Even the scientific committee advising the Belgian government had not asked for the culture industry closures, leaving virologist Marc Van Ranst to ponder that, in Belgium, "gluhwein beat culture."

with AAP

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