Cruiserweight Durodola cleared of doping, aims for WBC title shot
Nigerian-born cruiserweight contender Olanrewaju “God’s Power” Durodola says he’s relieved to have been cleared of doping allegations made by a discredited Russian organization.
“They tried to take away what I worked so hard for. I thank God they were not able to. I am a champion. I did that with my fists, not drugs. It hurt me when they tried to say I cheated.”
Following his upset WBC Silver Cruiserweight Championship-winning TKO 2 over highly touted Russian Dmitry Kudryashov on November 4 in Russia, Durodola (22-2, 20 KOs) says he was heartbroken to hear that Russian Anti-Doping Agency (RUSADA) were claiming he had tested positive for performance enhancing drugs.
However, after an administrative investigation, the World Boxing Council, in conjunction with an Independent Commission and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), ruled that RUSADA was non-compliant with proper testing procedures.
Reaffirmed as the WBC #2 contender, 35-year-old Durodola, a 2008 Olympian, finds himself in an excellent position to eventually challenge champion Grigory Drozd.
“It is my dream I have worked for all my life,” continued Durodola. “It was a nightmare to have them try to lie and take that away from me.”
Intent on protecting himself from attempts to have his ring achievements taken away unfairly again, Durodola has agreed to participate in the new WBC Clean Boxing Program. The program will provide for random and mandatory anti-doping testing of boxers both in-competition and out-of-competition.
Durodola’s promoter, Greg Cohen of Greg Cohen Promotions, says “I am pleased that the WBC took control of the situation and acted swiftly and appropriately. Durodola was a 25-1 underdog and won in spectacular fashion. This career defining victory can now be thoroughly enjoyed by the entire Durodola team and we are looking forward to a world title opportunity in the immediate future.”
Roland Jankelson, Durodola’s manager, expressed how hard it was on his boxer, himself, and the Durodola team, knowing that the test results were bogus, but being used to threaten the bout results and rob Durodola of his victory.
“The Kudryashov interests immediately rushed to fill the media with these false allegations, violating WBC rules regarding confidentiality requirements. Mr. Durodola, our team, and I are grateful to the WBC for its thorough investigation and decision declaring the Russian tests flawed.”
“The WBC has been a leader in the ongoing efforts to eliminate illegal drug use in professional boxing. Mr. Durodola and I whole heartedly support the WBC’s Clean Boxing Program, however, as our just concluded experience demonstrates, protocols must be in place to protect boxers from false allegations of the type employed against Durodola and Wach.
Boxers must necessarily subject themselves to foreign jurisdictions, and should be able to be confident in the fairness and neutrality of governing officials in these countries. These officials and national governing bodies are understandably resistant to oversight, however, our experiences demonstrate the need for improved oversight, and I will engage with the WBC in conversations about how this can be accomplished. The integrity of our sport, and the confidence the fans can have in the legitimacy of outcomes in certain jurisdictions demands immediate attention to these issues. The WBC has been at the forefront of efforts to make boxing safer, and for seeking justice for boxers. I am confident that the WBC will properly address how boxers can be better protected from false allegations coming from certain national jurisdictions.”