A lot of boxing fans were rather surprised when news surfaced that Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez failed a drugs test.
The Mexican fighter is still scheduled to fight Gennady Golovkin in their much-anticipated rematch on May 5, with Canelo now reportedly passing three drugs tests in a row on March 2, 5 and 9.
However, the positive results found on February 17 and 20 had a lot of people talking, with Golovkin himself saying: “They have to take action in that case, either disqualify him or [deliver] penalties. But if it’s neglected, why do we need a commission? And why talk about tests?
“When you get to this level, people should be watching the skills you muster from yourself, not wonder which laboratory you have.”
Canelo himself has said that the positive results were caused by the consumption of contaminated meat, but even if that were the truth, it seems that the governing boards surrounding the case have been willing to sweep it under the rug.
And these are thoughts echoed by Tony Bellew, who has previously stated that drugs cheats like Alexander Povetkin and Luis Ortiz should be banned for life.
"I’m sick of saying it, but this is what’s wrong with boxing," he wrote. "I’ve heard this contaminated meat defence… it’s a good alibi, but Canelo would have to eat about five kilos of contaminated meat for that to happen.
"How true can that be? Fans have been asking why I haven’t made a comment on Canelo. I haven’t made a comment because no one cares. What difference does it make? The organisations and governing bodies don’t care, and they certainly don’t care what I say.
"What is the point of me coming out and saying, ‘ban him for life’? No governing body has any desire to step up. Not Ukad, not the British Boxing Board of Control, not WADA – no one. The WBA and WBC have already decided Canelo is innocent.
"That seems unfair, doesn’t it? Canelo gets the full backing, but smaller fish are left to fry. They pick and choose which fighters to back. For me, a drugs cheat is a drugs cheat if there’s steroids in your system. It does my head in."
Bellew then revealed his interesting stance on the situation, stating that he doesn't place Canelo in the same bracket as Povetkin and Ortiz.
"I am struggling to find a way to declare Canelo as a genuine drug cheat, but the investigation hasn’t even begun yet and they’re declaring him innocent? Do I class Canelo in the same group as Alexander Povetkin and Luis Ortiz?
"No. They’ve failed on numerous occasions. Can you give someone like Canelo the benefit of the doubt? He’s never failed a test before… so maybe. Ultimately though, my stance is the same: Test positive for steroids and you should get a life-time ban."
Well, it looks like any sort of ban is unlikely to happen now, but there will certainly be a dark cloud hanging over Canelo when he takes to the ring on May 5.
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