The World Boxing Council (WBC) has announced an ambitious new plan to hold worldwide, random drug testing of all fighters ranked within their top 15 in each division, run by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association (VADA).
Doping has become a bigger issue than ever in all of sports in the last decade and a half or so, and boxing is no exception. With much of the sport's testing done in such a fashion that it frankly makes it fairly easy for those who know what they're doing to skirt the system, the WBC and VADA are hoping to make a real change.
“Boxing has been facing a problem with drugs and we have to address it,” World Boxing Council President Mauricio Sulaiman said at a news conference. “The athletes have to understand the dangers of drugs. We’ve funded the program, and any other [sanctioning] body is invited to participate.”
The program will feature testing by former Nevada ringside physician Margaret Goodman’s Voluntary Anti-Doping Assn., with various state and international athletic commissions providing the discipline beyond the WBC’s ability to warn, ban or strip belts from their fighters.
“Boxing has a litany of problems, but this program will try to establish some standardization,” said Goodman.
The testing will begin in 90 days, after an education period for fighters where they can learn about the procedures, the list of banned substances, and more. The WBC will be paying for the testing, which indicates a true seriousness about the program on their end.