Joshua mandatory challenger Ortiz suspended by WBA for failed drug test


The World Boxing Association (WBA) has suspended heavyweight contender Luis Ortiz for one year for a failed drug test.

Ortiz failed a random urine test by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association on September 22, the 38-year-old's second failed drug test in three years. He tested positive for two banned diuretics that are commonly used as masking agents for performance-enhancing drug use.

The Cuban-born fighter, undefeated in 27 fights with all but four wins coming via knockout, was the mandatory challenger for Anthony Joshua's WBA title.

His recent failed test had already led the World Boxing Council (WBC) to drop Ortiz from a scheduled November 4 heavyweight title fight against Deontay Wilder in the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Bermane Stiverne will now face Wilder in that bout.

Ortiz's WBA suspension means his status as title contender is revoked, he is removed from the WBA rankings, and he may not fight in a WBA-sanctioned fight until September 22, 2018.

The 38-year-old did not deny taking the two banned diuretics, chlorothiazide and hydrochlorothiazide, but said they are present in high blood pressure medication he is taking.