Bri­tain’s un­beaten Saun­ders va­cates mid­dleweight crown

Gulf Times Sport - - SPORT -

Un­de­feated Bri­tish south­paw Billy Joe Saun­ders va­cated the World Box­ing Or­gan­i­sa­tion mid­dleweight ti­tle Thurs­day af­ter a dop­ing vi­o­la­tion that scut­tled a sched­uled ti­tle de­fence next week in Bos­ton.

WBO pres­i­dent Fran­cisco Val­car­cel said he would rec­om­mend that Saun­ders re­ceive a six-month ban af­ter test­ing pos­i­tive in an Au­gust 30 uri­nal­y­sis for what ESPN re­ported was the banned stim­u­lant ox­ilofrine, which Saun­ders said came from a nasal spray.

“Saun­ders has vol­un­tar­ily va­cated the WBO mid­dleweight ti­tle and pub­licly apol­o­gised for his vi­o­la­tion of the Mas­sachusetts Ath­letic Com­mis­sion’s an­ti­dop­ing reg­u­la­tions,” Val­car­cel said in a state­ment on the WBO web­site. The com­mis­sion on Tues­day re­fused to ap­prove 29-year-old English­man Saun­ders, 26-0 with 12 knock­outs, to fight in Bos­ton as planned on Oc­to­ber 20 against Amer­i­can south­paw Demetrius An­drade, 25-0 with 16 knock­outs.

An­drade, 20, will now fight for the va­cant crown on Oc­to­ber 20 against Namibia’s 33-year-old un­beaten Wal­ter Kau­ton­dokwa, 17-0 with 16 knock­outs en­ter­ing his first fight out­side Africa and first world ti­tle bout.

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