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TONIGHT (Saturday October 20) Billy Joe Saunders ought to have been defending the WBO middleweight title against Demetrius Andrade in Boston. Instead after an adverse finding with the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association the Massachusetts State Athletic Commission denied him a licence to box. Saunders vacated the title, leaving Andrade to box Walter Kautondokwa for the belt and missing out on one of the largest purses of his career.
It cost him “huge money” said his promoter Frank Warren. “What can I say? He’s going to sue them. He’s instructed lawyers and he’s going to sue them,” he continued. “The whole way they handled it was amateur night out.”
As well objecting to Billy Joe’s hearing being held only 11 days before the fight was due, when the VADA test in question took place in August. Warren notes of Saunders’ drug testing, “You have a programme. With UKAD, WADA, they can come in any time of the day or night.”
“Those tests are ongoing all the time. He’s had two VADA tests since that thing he had. He’s had UKAD tests and he would have had more. But anyway it is what it is and it’s wrong. It was wrong and they got it wrong. They didn’t apply the rules correctly,” Warren said. “They’re governed by [USADA] that are affiliated to WADA. VADA don’t have any disciplinary [powers] all they do is test you.”
“Do you not think the British Boxing Board of Control would have kicked arse if they thought he did that? Let’s get it right, it’s not like he’s coming into it with a great reputation,” Warren noted.
“All the crap that he’s gone through, he’s let himself down badly with some of the stuff so it’s not like anyone is bending over backwards to help him.”