Stiverne Fails Drug Test, Povetkin Fight Still On
Former champion Bermane Stiverne has tested positive for a banned substance, but his upcoming fight with Alexander Povetkin for the vacant interim WBC title is still on. The WBC announced Stiverne’s failed test Monday, and said they would still sanction the bout, per ESPN’s Dan Rafael.
Stiverne and Povetkin were set to fight for the vacant title due to injuries to champion Deontay Wilder. Wilder, who has had surgery on his hand and biceps, will face the winner of the bout. The fight between Stiverne and Povetkin is scheduled for Dec. 17 in Russia.
According to a Monday announcement from the WBC, Stiverne tested positive for DMAA. The reason they are allowing the fight to proceed, according to their announcement, is that Stiverne "accidentally" ingested the substance and he has no prior history of drug testing:
"There is no evidence that Stiverne intentionally or even knowingly ingested a banned substance with the purpose of enhancing his performance in any fashion. Stiverne’s ingestion of DMAA was purely accidental."
The news is a bit ironic, as Stiverne’s opponent Povetkin has failed a drug test in the past, which forced him to lose his title shot at Wilder.
Rather than call the fight off, the WBC has fined Stiverne $75,000 and forced him to undergo special testing by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Agency (VADA), which Stiverne must finance. Another failed test would result in a suspension for Stiverne.