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HomeBoxingSergey Kovalev fails dope test, Bektemir Melikuziev fight uncertain

Sergey Kovalev fails dope test, Bektemir Melikuziev fight uncertain

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Former light heavyweight world champion Sergey Kovalev has failed the latest drug test, which is likely to put the Russian boxer’s upcoming clash against Bektemir Melikuziev in jeopardy.

Traces of synthetic testosterone found in Sergey Kovalev’s voluntary test sample

Sergey Kovalev (34-4-1, 29 KOs), who has held the WBA (Super), IBF and WBO titles in the past, had undergone a Voluntary Anti-Doping Association (VADA) test. The first sample, which was taken on 30th December, contained traces of synthetic testosterone while his second sample test results are yet to be revealed.

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“Adverse analytical finding: IRMS (isotope-ratio mass spectrometry) results are consistent with exogenous origin of testosterone and metabolites,” VADA’s letter to Kovalev and his team read, as quoted by BoxingScene.com.

Sergey Kovalev
Sergey Kovalev fails voluntary dope test ahead of his comeback fight against Melikuziev. (Image Courtesy: Getty)

While the second test result reaches the headlines, the results of the first test is already putting a huge question mark regarding Kovalev’s upcoming fight against Uzbek pugilist Bektemir Melikuziev (6-0, 5 KOs), which is scheduled to take place on 30th January at the Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, California.

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“VADA was contracted for this fight at his (Kovalev) insistence, as he has requested for almost all of his fights going back several years,” Main Events CEO and Kovalev’s promoter Kathy Duva stated, Duva was quoted by ESPN, “He maintains that he did not purposefully ingest any banned substances.”

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Bektemir Melikuziev wants to fight Kovalev “regardless” of dope test results

Sergey Kovalev fails dope test, Bektemir Melikuziev fight uncertain - THE SPORTS ROOM
Bektemir Melikuziev wants to continue with the fight despite his opponent failing VADA test. (Image Courtesy: Golden Boy)

Kovalev was last seen in action against Canelo Álvarez back on 2nd November at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, Paradise, Nevada, where he lost the WBO light heavyweight title via an 11th round knockout at the hands of the Mexican maestro.

The 37-year-old’s much-anticipated comeback bout against Melikuziev was already shifted to California from the Luzhniki Arena in Moscow earlier this week due to COVID woes. Now, the test results is putting the fight in jeopardy altogether.

However, Melikuziev himself claims to have no concern regarding the test results of Kovalev, as he still wants to fight the Russian.

“I don’t like talking, but I said it last night – it makes no difference to me, just put him in the ring, let us fight regardless,” the 2016 Olympic silver medallist tweeted.

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Saikat Banerjee
Saikat Banerjee
A wordsmith who indulges in the world of combat sports, Saikat is an MMA, boxing, and arm wrestling content writer at The MMA India Show and The Sports Room. Apart from combat sports, he also engages in Indian sports content at The Sports India Show. Currently pursuing an MBA from Jadavpur University, Saikat's other interests lie in motorcycling, working out, and travelling.
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