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Oscar Valdez denies cheating and offers theory for "humiliating" positive drugs test

Mirror logo Mirror 07/09/2021 Donagh Corby

Oscar Valdez has claimed that herbal tea may be the reason that he tested positive for a banned substance ahead of his fight this weekend.

The super featherweight champion tested positive for the banned substance phentermine during a pre-fight test administered by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association (VADA) ahead of his bout with Robson Conceicao this weekend.

But despite the positive test, the Pascua Yaqui Tribe Athletic Commission who are sanctioning the bout at the Casino Del Sol in Tucson, Arizona, will allow the world title fight to continue.

And Valdez has claimed that the drug, which is not banned out-of-competition, may have entered his system through, bizarrely, his change in beverage choice.

├ôscar Valdez wearing a costume: Oscar Valdez will still fight this weekend despite a positive VADA test © Mikey Williams/Top Rank Inc via Getty Images Oscar Valdez will still fight this weekend despite a positive VADA test

"We've literally never done anything different as far as taking other supplements," Valdez told ESPN.

"You know, very simple supplements -- vitamin C, vitamin B12 and all those normal vitamins that everybody should take.

"The only difference is that I've taken herbal tea. That's the reason why I would think that could possibly be, but I'm still not 100 per cent how that got into my body.

"I gave up coffee a while back and I started taking more herbal teas.

"And just trying different types of teas was the only difference that I've done in this training camp, and that's one of the reasons why I think that's possibly it."

The unbeaten fighter has claimed that he has never knowingly induced any substances, and believes the herbal teas, which he stopped drinking last month to make sure that he was not taking in any substance.

"What I can say is that I'm a 100% clean fighter," he explained. I don't know how that got into my body.

"I know every fighter is responsible for whatever they consume, but on behalf of myself, I have no clear answer on how that got into my body.

"I've always considered myself, and I will always be a clean fighter.

"So, I don't know how that got into my body."

And he has implored Conceicao to fight him, saying that the substance won't impact his performance in the fight.

Phentermine is generally used for weight loss, and requires a prescription for use, which Valdez has promised that he hasn't had ahead of the fight.

"If I was him I would 100% fight me," he continued.

"Because this is a chance to win a world title, and if I'm being more honest, I would think, 'What is he taking? Oh, he's taking this substance to lose weight?

"'Oh, well that's a pretty dumb move because he's losing weight way too early from the fight. So it means he might be drained or overtraining, I don't know.'"

Phentermine is an amphetamine and a DEA controlled substance, and the bout will still take place on Friday night as initially planned, with Junto Nakatani facing Angek Acosta for the world flyweight title on the undercard.

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