World Boxing Council Super-Middleweight champion David Benavidez has held his hands following a positive drug test for cocaine.
Benavidez, the youngest boxing world titleholder at 21, was flagged by VADA this week.
Breaking the news, WBC President Mauricio Sulaiman said: “The World Boxing Council has received confirmation from the Voluntary Anti-Doping Agency of an adverse finding of David Benavidez. Protocol to immediately begin and will inform.”
Sanctions could now follow for Benavidez, which include a suspension and removal of his green belt.
The fighter himself offered no excuses when taking to social media on Tuesday evening.
“I would like to apologize to the WBC for my actions sincerely. I am embarrassed to have this happen. (Also), to my all my fans that I lost the respect of.
“I know a lot of people won’t see me the same, but I am young, and it was a mistake on my behalf,” he added.
I would like to sincerely apologize to the wbc for my actions I am embarrassed to have this happen and to my all my fans that I lost the respect of I know a lot of people won’t see me the same but I am young and it was a mistake on my behalf . @WBCBoxing @BenavidezBoxing pic.twitter.com/HELRcARCG1
— David Benavidez (@Benavidez300) September 19, 2018
Naivety does seem the order of the day, while Benavidez must deal with the consequences of his misdemeanor.
Winning the WBC crown in September 2017 at just 20 years old, Benavidez was tipped for the top at a tender age.
Victories back-to-back over Ronald Gavril have put Benavidez in line for massive fights if his position as champion remains untouched.
Benavidez scored a split decision the first time around but won more convincingly in the rematch last February. Beginning to fulfill his potential, the manner of Benavidez’s response to the charges could be a telling factor in his future.
It’s now a case of whether or not leniency will be shown for recreational drug use.
In the wake of Canelo Alvarez defeating Gennady Golovkin, Benavidez immediately offered his Mexican counterpart a shot at his title. But any suspension for Benavidez would put those plans on the backburner.
All sides will reveal more in the coming days.