WBA super-middleweight world champion Felix Sturm has tested positive for a banned substance after winning his championship rematch with Russia's Fedor Chudinov. Sturm plans to appeal, saying he knows he's clean.
Felix Sturm was told in an email on Friday that he had tested positive for hydroxy-stanozolol, a type of steroid popular among bodybuilders. The test took place after his victory over Fedor Chudinov on February 20.
"At first I was shocked," Sturm told German news agency SID. "This is all very strange, mainly that it took eight weeks until I was told the results. Germany's professional boxers' association was not informed of the positive test either, just me and my fitness trainer."
The president of the BDB (federation of German professional boxers), Thomas Pütz, told the dpa news agency that he'd also learned of the possible transgression on Friday.
"Felix Sturm now has the chance to respond. For us, the presumption of innocence applies. I do not believe that he has knowingly taken anything," Pütz said.
Sturm to challenge test result
The news about the 37-year-old from Leverkusen, a five-times world champion, was first reported by local Cologne newspaper "Express." Sturm said that he would challenge the test result.
"I must have been tested a hundred times - blood and urine both," Sturm said. "There's never been anything. I have an absolutely clear conscience. I will seek out a lawyer. This is not what I've been working for over the past 26 years. I'll fight this like a lion, as in the ring."
Sturm's result was from the so-called "A test," and he said he'd demand a "B test" using a separate sample he provided on the same day.
"There have been many cases where the B test disproves the first results," the boxer, born in Bosnia, said. "I'm not worried. I'm 1,000 percent sure I've done nothing wrong."
Should the B test support the initial findings, Sturm would face a two-year ban from the ring. Given his age, this could mean an early end to his career.
msh/cmk (dpa, SID)