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WBC finally suspends and fines Povetkin over two positive drug tests

Fighters Network

The World Boxing Council finally revealed its punishment to Alexander Povetkin for flunking two drug tests before title bouts in the span of eight months, ending a methodical investigative process that took nearly a year to conclude.

The WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman announced on Thursday night that Povetkin, a former heavyweight titleholder from Russia who was taking part in VADA’s random drug-testing program with the WBC, has been suspended indefinitely from participating in any WBC-run bouts and has been fined $250,000, which he will have to pay to the WBC.

Moreover, VADA, as part of the WBC’s Clean Boxing Program, plans to design a rigorous testing protocol for Povetkin at his own cost (the WBC pays for the program in normal circumstances) and which “will commence as soon as feasible after this ruling and will continue for one year thereafter,” the WBC said in its statement.

Povetkin will be allowed to apply for reinstatement into the WBC after the one-year anniversary of this ruling, the WBC said. The WBC did seem to open the door for allowing Povetkin back into its good graces earlier by giving Povetking the “opportunity to submit additional evidence at a time and in a form the WBC will determine at its sole discretion concerning his positive test for Ostarine,” it said in the statement, referencing his second and most recent failed drug test. The WBC “might issue a supplemental ruling based on information and materials Mr. Povetkin submits.”

Povetkin tested positive for the banned substance meldonium barely a week before he was to face WBC champion Deontay Wilder on May 21. But rather than suspend Povetkin, the WBC ruled in August that it didn’t have enough evidence to determine if he had used the substance after it had been banned on Jan. 1, 2016, warning him if he strayed again over the next 12 months he would be punished.

When the WBC allowed Povetkin to face Bermane Stiverne for an interim title on Dec. 17, Povetkin again tested positive on Dec. 6 for ostarine, an anabolic steroid, according to the WBC, and the bout fell apart. Meanwhile, Wilder and promoter Lou DiBella sued Povetkin and his promoter Andrey Ryabinsky for breach of contract and a minimum of $5 million in U.S. federal court in New York and prevailed. The jury determined that Povetkin had in fact ingested meldonium after it was banned.