By Terence Dooley
WBA interim Super bantamweight titlist Scott Quigg, 25-0-1 (14) takes on Brazil’s William Prado, 21-3-1 (14), at the Bolton Arena live on Sky Sports later tonight yet there was still time for an interesting last late twist in the story of Quigg’s first outing since signing for Matchroom Sports earlier this month.
BoxingScene received word that the Brazilian had failed a doping test during his last visit to Europe, a decision defeat to Jeremy Parodi in Le Pouzin, France on October 5 2012, and was said to be currently serving a ban under the Fédération Française de Boxe. This supposed sanction was clearly not enforced in Brazil, where he had his last two fights and has fought for the majority of his career.
If Prado has been banned, there would have been scope for withdrawing him from the Quigg bout as a ban handed down by an EBU country is binding upon the other member countries. The BBBoC pointed this out when disputing Dereck Chisora’s right to fight under a Luxembourg Boxing Federation licence, or any other European licence, during the period in which his own BBBoC licence was withdrawn due to his February 2012 press conference brawl with David Haye.
Certainly, the AFLD (Agence française de lutte contre le dopage) received a positive boxing doping test result from the Le Pouzin, France region on October 6 2012. Their report refers to an ‘in competition’ urine sample that uncovered methylhexanamine, which is found in some over the counter fat-burning supplements and has led to bans for both Enzo Maccarinelli (six months) and Dillian Whyte. Ironically, Whyte was handed a two-year ban for his ‘in competition’ positive test last October.
All of the other fighters on the Le Pouzin bill have since fought in France, apart from Prado, who registered wins over Claudio Soares (UD 6) and Adriano Martins Barbosa (KO 2) in Brazil to set up the showdown with Quigg.
Like the UKAD (UK Anti-Doping) here in the U.K., the French doping agency pass their findings to the national governing body, who then apply any sanctions or recommendations. It is conceivable that either the AFLD or the Fédération Française de Boxe decided that the fighter who failed the test had done so under mitigating circumstances and opted against a sanction. Furthermore, Prado is not named on the EBU’s list of fighters currently serving a suspension.
Eddie Hearn of Matchroom confirmed that the same information that I had been given had also been sent through to the BBBoC on Friday morning, but told me that: “The Board have looked into it and spoken to the French federation, so there’s not a problem.”
The Fédération Française de Boxe and AFLD were unavailable for comment at the time of writing. However, should Prado have received a sanction from their French equivalents, the Board would have had to answer questions over why he is boxing on U.K. soil with this shadow hanging over his last appearance on the continent when British-based fighters who have been sanctioned have to face an agonising wait before boxing again. These same British boxers would also face threats of further sanctions down the line if they were to pursue a licence with another governing body.
Thankfully Robert Smith, the General Secretary of the BBBoC, cleared the matter up on Saturday morning during a phone call with BoxingScene in which he revealed that Prado had been given the all clear by both the French and Brazilian boxing authorities. Smith assured me that Prado is not on any suspension lists in Europe or Brazil, but was unable to comment on whether or not he had failed a test in Le Pouzin.
“No, he's not on any EBU suspension list,” said Smith. “I've spoken to the vice president of the French Federation and the EBU — he's not suspended. We haven't got any notification that he's been suspended. I've not seen anything from any other federation saying he's suspended. We have authorisation from the Bralizian Federation saying he's clear, and we also had another letter from them saying he's never been suspended with them. So who else do we need to talk to?”
Prado, therefore, is free to try to hand Quigg the first loss of the Bury boxer’s professional career later tonight, but it highlights the difficulties of matchmaking in the modern world. Vigilance is key, and the Board’s awareness in this case has quashed any last-minute controversy ahead of Quigg’s ring return.
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