ALEXANDER POVETKIN FAILS DRUG TEST FOR MELDONIUM
By Hector Franco
It was announced yesterday that former WBA heavyweight champion, Alexander Povetkin, had failed a drug test. This is before his upcoming bout with WBC champion, Deontay Wilder. The bout was scheduled to take place in Moscow, Russia. It’s unclear as of now if the bout will still take place. Wilder at this time is training over in London, England to put the last finishing touches on his training camp.
The drug testing for the bout is being handled by the Volunteer Anti-Doping Agency also known as VADA. VADA is one of the most well respected drug testing agencies in North America. Most recently VADA found banned substance Clenbuterol in the system of WBC 130 pound champion, Francisco Vargas. Clenbuterol has been the subject of much controversy for athletes in Mexico. The substance is used in many types of meat in the country. In 2014 an entire soccer team from Mexico failed drug tests because of the clenbuterol substance being found in the meat the team was eating. The substance that Povetkin failed his test for, Meldonium, isn’t without controversy itself.
Meldonium also goes by the name of Mildronate. It is a substance that has only recently been put on the banned list by the World Anti-Doping Agency. It was banned at the beginning of the year on January 1st. While the substance has been banned by WADA it is still available as an over the counter medicine in Eastern Europe. Mildronate is not available in the United States or Western Europe. Povetkin would have likely had more access to this substance in Russia because of where it is available.
The company that made the substance is called Grindeks. They have protested Meldonium being put on the banned substances list by WADA. According to Grindeks,
They have maintained that it is a “protective” drug not one that increases performance in athletes. As of now the bout is still scheduled to take place on May 21st. In the upcoming days boxing fans and media alike will learn more about Meldonium. With all the controversy recently regarding Russian athletes and PED's, Povetkin will be in the hot seat until all this is cleared up.
Kubota, T. (2016, March 11). Maria Sharapova's Failed Doping Test: What Is Meldonium? Retrieved May 13, 2016, from http://www.livescience.com/54024-what-is-meldonium.html
R. (2014, May 22). STAY AWAY FROM BEEF, MEXICO'S SOCCER TEAM WARNED AFTER DRUG POSITIVES. Retrieved May 13, 2016, from http://www.newsweek.com/stay-away-beef-mexicos-soccer-team-warned-after-drug-positives-251839
Featured Photo: Dagmer Kiehol/Getty Images