The WBC heavyweight championship of the world was scheduled to be contested on May 21, 2016 in Russia. The Bout was Champion Deontay Wilder’s mandatory defense of his title against Mandatory Challenger Alexander Povetkin. The Bout was the result of a purse bid the WBC conducted and which promoter World of Boxing won.
On May 13, 2016 VADA reported to the WBC that Alexander Povetkin’s anti- doping test that had taken from his April 27, 2016 sample pursuant to the WBC Clean Boxing Program yielded an adverse finding for the banned substance Meldonium.
On May 15, 2016, the WBC granted Champion Wilder the right to make a voluntary defense of his World Title, which defense took place on July 16, 2016. In connection with that defense, Champion Wilder injured his right hand and arm, which injury required surgery. As a result of his injuries and surgeries, Champion Wilder is expected to be inactive until January of 2017.
On August 17, 2016, the WBC issued two separate rulings.
The first WBC Board ruling related to Mr. Povetkin’s anti-doping test’s adverse finding for Meldonium which had resulted in the Wilder v. Povetkin not going forward as scheduled on May 21, 2016.
The second WBC Board ruling set forth the status of the division in light of Champion Wilder’s injuries suffered during his voluntary title defense. The second WBC Board Ruling ordered a purse bid ceremony in connection with the Povetkin versus Stiverne WBC Interim Heavyweight Championship bout. The purse bid ceremony will take place today, October 7, 2016.
As a result of the foreground above, the WBC would like to clarify its August 17, 2016, ruling concerning the adverse result for Meldonium found in Mr. Povetkin’s April 27, 2016, urine sample. Since that ruling, questions have arisen about its meaning.
1. For the avoidance of doubt, the WBC hereby states that the WBC ruling was not intended to convey, and should not be construed as conveying, a conclusion about whether Mr. Povetkin did or did not take Meldonium after it became a banned substance on January 1, 2016.
2. The litigation pending between Wilder and Povetkin is going to trial in February of 2017. If Mr. Wilder prevails at that trial, the WBC shall afford Mr. Povetkin the opportunity to show that the trial’s result was not based on a finding that Mr. Povetkin ingested Meldonium after January 1, 2016. If Mr. Povetkin fails to make that showing the WBC shall: (a) withdraw recognition of Povetkin as Interim World Champion (if he wins that title); (b) withdraw any mandatory challenger status he might have; and (c) impose any penalties upon Mr. Povetkin as per the WBC Clean Boxing Program Protocol, which includes suspensions and fines.