WBC mandatory super middleweight challenger Avni Yildirim, who failed a drug test earlier this month, will get his crack at David Benavidez after all. The sanctioning body today announced that they’d “closed” their investigation, which determined that Yildirim had “unintentionally and inadvertently” been exposed to the two banned substances “as part of a muscular inflammation therapy he received in Germany.”
That investigation and subsequent evaluation concluded that Mr. Yildirim did not ingest or became exposed to a banned substance knowledgeably or with a performance enhancement intention. Instead, Mr. Yildirim unintentionally and inadvertently became exposed to a substance as part of a muscular inflammation therapy he received in Germany which was fully confirmed during the investigation. Credible evidence was presented that the source of the banned substance was a specific contaminated product that was administered to Mr. Yildirim.
Mr. Yildirim and the WBC have entered into an adjudication agreement that includes a strict, long-term testing program, a fine, participation in a CBP awareness program and controls concerning any substance to which Mr. Yildirim might be exposed in the future.
With that out of the way, Yildirim (21-2, 12 KO) now faces the daunting task of challenging Benavidez (22-0, 19 KO), who battered Anthony Dirrell into submission three weeks ago. Even if you don’t buy his explanation, I think this matchup is punishment enough.