7 May 2020

Fury’s victory over Hammer stands, despite UKAD ruling

The British Boxing Board of Control (BBBofC) has confirmed that Tyson Fury’s victory over Christian Hammer stands, despite Fury testing positive for Nandrolone after the 28 February 2015 fight and despite UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) ruling that Fury’s win should be disqualified. Paragraph 3.2 of UKAD’s Ruling (PDF below) outlines that Fury’s win over Hammer should be ‘disqualified, and any and all titles, prize money and ranking points that he secured as a result of his victory in that fight are forfeited’.

‘At the time of the UKAD decision, the BBBoC Regulations did not specify changing decisions to “no contests”’, explained Robert Smith, BBBofC General Secretary, in an email. ‘UKAD was informed of this at the time. Subsequently, the Board have amended the Regulations but it was decided, after legal advice, not to go back retrospectively on any previous decisions.’

In a December 2017 compromise Decision, Tyson and Hughie Fury were both sanctioned for an anti-doping rule violation (ADRV) involving Nandrolone, which they blamed on consuming wild boar or, alternatively, contaminated supplements. A second test refusal charge against Tyson Fury was withdrawn as part of the compromise.

Concerns about the impact of any legal action the Furys might take against UKAD for loss of earnings was reflected in UKAD’s statement announcing the compromise Decision. ‘‎In recognition of the respective counter-arguments and the risks inherent [emphasis added] in the dispute resolution process, each side has accepted a compromise of its position’, it read. ‘The proceedings have therefore been resolved on the following basis: the anti-doping rule violations based on the reported presence of elevated levels of nandrolone metabolites are upheld, the refusal charge is withdrawn, Hughie and Tyson Fury each receive a two-year period of ineligibility, and their results from their respective fights in February 2015 are disqualified.’

Fury’s ADRV resulted from an in-competition test after his fight with Hammer. Under Article 9 of the World Anti-Doping Code, which covers individual sports such as boxing, an in-competition ADRV results in automatic disqualification of that Result. In addition, Article 15 of the Code outlines that final decisions by Code Signatories must be ‘recognised and respected by all other Signatories’.

The Code doesn’t specifically spell out consequences applicable to sporting bodies if they refuse to implement disqualifications. ‘For a determination that an Athlete committed an anti-doping rule violation based on an Adverse Analytical Finding for a Sample taken In-Competition, the Athlete’s results obtained in the Competition would be Disqualified under Code Article 9 and all other competitive results obtained by the Athlete from the date the Sample was collected through the duration of the period of Ineligibility are also Disqualified under Code Article 10.10’, reads the International Standard for Results Management (ISRM), which is not due to be introduced until next year.

UKAD declined to comment when asked whether it is satisfied that the BBBoC has implemented its compromise Decision. Christian Hammer’s agent has also been contacted.

To date, UKAD has not commented on the accuracy of allegations made by a farmer that he had lied about supplying Wild Boar to the Furys. ‘We will always review any potential evidence in relation to any anti-doping offence, and take investigatory action where necessary’, read a UKAD statement provided to the Mail on Sunday, which reported the farmer’s allegations. ‘If anyone has information that could be of interest to UKAD and its investigations on any matter, we urge them to contact us.’

Nandrolone metabolites can naturally occur in certain meats. A scientific study published in 2000 found that consumption of wild boar can result in nandrolone metabolites being detected in urine.

‘The farmer making these outrageous allegations sent me a letter last October, full of errors and basically telling me he had committed perjury by signing statements under oath and lying’, read a statement from Frank Warren, who now represents Fury. ‘When I called him, he asked for money. I told him to clear off and get in contact with UKAD. He chose not to speak to UKAD but instead speak to a newspaper. How anybody can take this man seriously is beyond belief. Tyson has never met this man in his life. What a load of rubbish. We’ll leave this with UKAD to look into and don’t expect it to go any further.’

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