Drug-Testing Issues Throw Confusion and Conflict Into Klitschko-Povetkin Fight

  • May 23rd, 2013
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Will there be an accord reached with regard to drug-testing protocols for the Wladimir Klitschko-Alexander Povetkin fight that is scheduled for October 5?

Wladimir Klitschko Pre Fight Interview

It would seem that there is plenty of time for everything to be worked out, but sometimes the subject of testing for substances of a sticky issue.

In this particular instance, the Klitschko people would like to see the testing performed by an agency that is based in Germany, which also happens to be the base they more or less fight out of, and Povetkin’s connections would rather see an agency is Russia conduct the process.

When it comes to leverage in this situation, most of it would appear to sit with Klitschko, who is, after all, the unified heavyweight champion, as well as the WBA’s “Super” champion, as opposed to the undefeated Povetkin, who holds the “regular” title belt.. Berndt Boente, the business manager who handles things for Team Klitschko, says that he is standing his ground on the issue and will have his man pull out of the fight if this particular condition is not met, and Povetkin’s manager, Vlad Hrunov, seems prepared to backpedal, although he would like to have a so-called neutral country like the U.S. (perhaps in the form of VADA) do the process.

If Povetkin’s folks have their way, there would be duplicate samples being analyzed in Germany, Russia and the U.S., and that is a situation that could lead to much confusion if two different testing agencies come up with different results.

With the fight date and site (Moscow) having been set, it is hard to believe that an issue that could cause so much conflict between both sides and would seem to have a material impact on the proceedings would not have been agreed upon already.

Complicating things further is the fact that this fight has to take place. This fight was the subject of a purse bid, as administered by the WBA, because it was a mandatory fight, inasmuch as amid the maze that exists even within sanctioning bodies, both are “champions” in the same division with the same organization (the WBA, even though Klitschko also holds the IBF and WBO titles). And Hrunov Promotions won the right to put on the fight with the astronomical bid of $23,333,330, which was more than three times that of the next highest bid.

Klitschko, the Ukrainian with a 60-3, 51 KO’s record, has had a spotless record ever since he was stopped in five rounds by Lamon Brewster in 2004. He kept busy with a sixth-round TKO over previously-unbeaten Francesco Pianeta on May 4. In that fight, Pianeta was proven to be not nearly as good as his record indicated, as he was sent to the canvas three times.

Povetkin won the WBA “regular”:heavyweight title over Ruslan Chagaev in August 2011, and has defended four times. Last weekend he made short work of Andrzej Wawrzyk, stopping him in three rounds. Povetkin has been tested a little here and there, but he would be taking a considerable step up in terms of opposition with a fight against Klitschko. By the same token, this might be Klitschko’s toughest challenge in at least the last few years. in addition to Povetkin’s unbeaten pro record, he is also a former world amateur champion, as well as an Olympic gold medalist in the super heavyweight division.

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