WWE star Jinder Mahal has denied rumours he dropped the world title this week after violating the company’s wellness policy.
The Modern Day Maharaja was set for a blockbuster champion vs champion clash with Brock Lesnar at this month’s Survivor Series.
But the 31-year-old Mahal’s hopes of pulling off the biggest upset of his career against The Beast at the pay-per-view were scuppered on Tuesday.
Wrestling fans were stunned when he dropped the belt to AJ Styles on SmackDown Live in Manchester, causing him to not only lose the strap but being replaced as the blue brand’s champ for the extravaganza on Sunday 19 November.
The dramatic change to the Survivor Series line-up led to wrestling fans posting a number of theories over the reason behind Mahal’s loss.
But in an emotional Instagram post, Mahal hit back saying: “To @ajstylesp1, you were the better man for one night.
“Six months I held the #WWEChampionship, defended it countless times, all over the world.
“I will one day raise the title again. To my haters and wrestling “insiders”, this was NOT an experiment, I am NOT injured, I have NOT violated the wellness policy.
“So keep throwing shade my way , it only motivates me.”
Mahal’s victory over Orton to win the WWE championship earlier this year caused massive surprise.
Many claimed it was due to the wrestling promotion trying to grow their market in India.
It remains to be seen whether he will now feature on the Survivor Series line-up, although there appears to be little room for manoeuvre.
John Cena has been confirmed as the fifth member of Team SmackDown to take on their Raw counterparts for brand supremacy.
Styles will now be the man challenging Lesnar in a dream match for fans.
Intercontinental champion The Miz will face US champ Baron Corbin.
Meanwhile, SmackDown tag team belt holders The Usos will battle their Raw equivalents Cesaro and Sheamus.