Yildirim tests positive for anabolic steroids

Super middleweight world title contender Avni Yildirim, who is the mandatory challenger to WBC titlist David Benavidez, may have just thrown away an opportunity of a lifetime.

According to the WBC, Yildirim (21-2, 12 KO’s), 28, of Turkey, has tested positive for the banned anabolic steroid methylclostebol.

Boxing Scene.com’s Jake Donovan was first to report the story.

Methylclostebol is a synthetic, orally-ingested substance that has long been on the prohibited lists of both the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) and VADA.

According to a statement released by the WBC, Yildirim was tested on Sept. 13 by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Agency (VADA), and results of the test were sent to the WBC a week ago.

“Yildirim and his team voluntarily agreed to hold an immediate evaluation meeting with an expert scientist approved by the WBC to conduct an in-depth analysis of the situation at hand. The WBC considers those steps necessary to achieve a conclusion of the matter consistent with the WBC Rules and Regulations and with the WBC CBP Protocol,” the WBC said in a statement.

Benavidez (22-0, 19 KO’s), a Phoenix, Arizona native, who reclaimed the super middleweight title with a ninth-round knockout of former world champion Anthony Dirrell on Sept. 28, was stripped of his belt a year ago after he tested positive for cocaine.

Yildirim fought Dirrell for the vacant title this past February, with Dirrell earning a 10th-round technical decision victory after an accidental head-butt opened up a nasty cut over his left eye.

Yildirim and his team filed an official protest, to which the WBC honored their request by ordering the winner of Dirrell-Benavidez to face him.

However, depending on the results of the investigation, Yildirim’s request could be voided.

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