Rio Ferdinand has yet to apply to the British Boxing Board of Control for a boxer’s licence.

The former England captain is to train with former WBC super-middleweight champion Richie Woodhall for Betfair’s ‘Defender to Contender’ project which he will speak about in a press conference on Tuesday afternoon.

Betfair says it will help 38-year-old Ferdinand “qualify for his British Boxing Board of Control licence”.

BBBC general secretary Robert Smith told Press Association Sport: “We have received no application from Rio Ferdinand for a boxer’s licence and the first I heard about it was listening to the radio on Monday night.

“I was completely surprised. We don’t have an application, so there’s nothing to consider. Nor have we had any conversation with anybody regarding this.”

The governing body granted boxing licences to retired cricketer Andrew Flintoff and retired footballers Leon McKenzie and Curtis Woodhouse. Asked if there was any reason Ferdinand might be treated differently, Smith replied: “Absolutely not”.