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Russian boxer Povetkin may be 'banned for life' if caught on doping again

November 09, 15:26 UTC+3

Povetkin is scheduled for his next bout on December 16 against Romania’s Christian Hammer

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Alexander Povetkin

Alexander Povetkin

© Valery Sharifulin/TASS

MOSCOW, November 9. /TASS/. Russian heavyweight boxer Alexander Povetkin will be banned for life in case his future doping samples test positive for prohibited performance enhancing substances again, Andrey Ryabinsky, the head of the Boxing World promotion company, said on Thursday.

"In case of another [anti-doping rules] violation, Alexander will be banned for life," Ryabinsky told journalists.

Ryabinsky announced on Wednesday that the World Boxing Council (WBC) dropped the indefinite suspension against Povetkin and the Russian boxer was again eligible for WBC-sponsored bouts starting December 6. However, Povetkin still had to pay the WBC a fine of $250,000.

Speaking about the $250,000 financial penalty, Ryabinsky said that "we will cover the fine as well as all accompanying expenses."

The WBC announced in its statement late on Wednesday that its Board of Governors decided to impose "a one year period of probation starting on December 7, 2017, after which time Mr. Povetkin shall be free and clear of any penalty as long as he does not test positive for any banned substance during the remainder of the suspension and subsequent probation, or until December 6, 2018."

Traces of prohibited substance ostarine were discovered in Povetkin’s doping sample in December 2016 before his bout with Canada’s Bermane Stiverne for the title of the interim WBC world champion.

The WBC ruled to suspend the Russian boxer indefinitely and slapped a financial penalty on him as well. Povetkin appealed the WBC’s decision this past April.

Alexei Karpenko, a senior partner with Forward Legal company representing Povetkin’s interests, told TASS on Wednesday that the company managed to prove to the WBC that the banned substance ostarine entered Povetkin’s body with nutritional supplements.

Talking to journalists on Thursday, Povetkin said he never felt guilty despite the ongoing doping row, but added that he would be more careful with nutritional supplements in the future.

"I have never felt guilty and kept up with my trainings in a standard mode," Povetkin told journalists. "It is very pleasant that we finally found justice."

"Our team will be more careful in the future with nutrition checks and I believe that there will be no more problems," the boxer added.

Known to the fans as ‘Russian Vityaz,’ Povetkin (W-32; L-1; 23 KOs) was reinstated this summer in the ratings of the World Boxing Association (WBA), the World Boxing Organization (WBO) and the International Boxing Federation (IBF).

The Russian boxer held his latest fight on July 1 in Moscow against Ukraine’s Andriy Rudenko. Povetkin defeated his opponent by a twelve-round unanimous decision of the referees (120-109, 120-108, 120-108) and seized the WBO International and WBA Continental heavyweight titles.

Povetkin is scheduled for his next bout on December 16 against Romania’s Christian Hammer (W-22; L-4; 12 KOs). The fight will be held in Russia’s Urals city of Yekaterinburg.

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