Botha tests positive for drugs after losing to Sonny Bill
Former All Black Sonny Bill Williams’s opponent Francois Botha failed a dope test before their heavyweight bout, local media reported on Sunday, adding further doubts to the credibility of the controversial fight.
Botha was beaten on points by Williams on Friday.
The reports said the banned substance was found in a urine sample taken on Tuesday from the 44-year-old South African, who has fought Mike Tyson, Evander Holyfield, Michael Moorer and Lennox Lewis during a 20-year-professional career.
The test also found traces of Benzodiazepine, a valium-like product, in Botha’s system. Results will be sent to the Panama headquarters of the WBA, which sanctioned Friday’s bout.
Williams (6-0) took his unbeaten record to six wins in farcical circumstances when he was awarded the victory over the 44-year-old South African in a bout reduced to 10 rounds from the original 12 at the last minute.
Doubts also surfaced over the fight’s status as a purported World Boxing Association (WBA) international heavyweight title bout after local media reported that no officials from the organisation were present.
An incensed Botha, who was well on top in the closing rounds, described the late change of bout length as “match-fixing” and demanded a rematch with Williams, who later said he was more than willing to fight the South African again.
“After, God willing, having a good footy (rugby league) season I’ll gladly rematch Mr Botha. Even in South Africa,” he said on his Twitter feed.
“Also very humbled by the congratulatory phone call from the WBA on the fight and the win.. To all my supporters nothing but love!!”