Billy Joe Saunders is likely to be stripped of his WBO belt
12 October, 2018, 21:13
Billy Joe Saunders has been refused a boxing license by the Massachusetts State Athletic Commission to defend his WBO middleweight title against Demetrius Andrade.
Frank Warren has insisted the results were due to Saunders taking a nasal spray.
"The WBO will examine the situation with due diligence and proceed according to its "Rules & Regulations" decide which is the proper course of action".
Saunders, who failed a screening for the banned performance-enhancing stimulant oxilofrine conducted by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association (Vada), had been scheduled to face Andrade, a two-times junior middleweight beltholder and the WBO's mandatory challenger, in the main event of a Matchroom Boxing card on 20 October at Boston's TD Garden.
James Tennyson's IBF world super-featherweight challenge against United States champion Tevin Farmer will go ahead on 20 October despite doubts over Billy Joe Saunders' presence on the bill.
But it now looks likely that the WBO will strip Saunders of his 160lbs belt, with Andrade set to meet Walter Kautondokwa for the vacant interim title instead.
The North London boxer has said he will appeal the Commission decision and the WBO decision.
And in September he was fined £100,000 by the British Boxing Board of Control for misconduct after a video was posted on social media in which the fighter offers a woman £150 worth of drugs to perform a sex act.
In August, the former Olympian was embroiled in an ugly spat with heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder at a restaurant in Northern Ireland ahead of the Tyson Fury-Francesco Pianeta fight, with Saunders accused of throwing half-a-chicken at the unbeaten American.