SYDNEY (AP) — Australian boxer Sam Soliman has threatened legal action after a German newspaper reported that he failed a drug test taken before his win over former WBA champion Felix Sturm in their IBF middleweight title eliminator last month.
Federation of German Professional Boxers president Thomas Puetz told the daily Bild that Soliman's urine sample tested positive for an undisclosed banned substance. In Berlin, Putz said a "difficult to detect designer drug with stimulating effects was found" following the 39-year-old Soliman's unanimous decision win over Sturm in Duesseldorf on Feb. 1.
Soliman can present his case at a hearing. Puetz said he will inform Germany's National Anti-Doping Agency and the IBF. No. 1 IBF contender Soliman took to Twitter on Sunday to refute the claim. "Drug allegations are complete nonsense and an insult. Anyone who knows me knows my views about drug cheats," Soliman wrote.
"The matter is now in the hands of my lawyers & it will be pursued 2 the fullest extent possible. I won't be commenting further." In Sydney, Soliman's manager David Stanley told Australian Associated Press that the doping accusations were "unfounded allegations."
"He's absolutely gobsmacked because this (anti-doping) is a very important principle that he lives by," Stanley said of Soliman's reaction when told of the news on Sunday in Australia. Soliman, who is negotiating a fight between Soliman and IBF middleweight world champion Daniel Geale later this year, said he was awaiting official notification after the positive test claim.
"We understand this has all come out of the Sturm camp," Stanley said. "I'm told that the Sturm camp is alleging that Sam has tested positive for an undetectable amphetamine, that's absolute rubbish. I'm also told that Sturm has identified who he should be fighting next so that he can then fight for the world title. This is an act of absolute desperation.
"I've contacted the Australian anti-doping commission to get them to get into contact with the German group because there are irregularities all over the place on this against someone who is vehemently opposed to any form of performance-enhancing drug use."