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Championship Fight Between U.S., Russian Heavyweights Canceled

Russian boxer Aleksandr Povetkin's positive drug test caused his fight with world heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder to be canceled.

A world heavyweight championship fight between Russian boxer Aleksandr Povetkin and reigning champion Deontay Wilder that was scheduled for May 21 in Moscow has been canceled.

The World Boxing Council canceled the fight after Povetkin tested positive last week for the banned drug meldonium. Povetkin's managers are vowing to fight the cancellation.

"I still wanted to fight," Wilder told the Associated Press on May 17. "But at the end of the day, I had to think about the repercussions behind it. We would be sending out a message that says it's OK to do this."

Wilder, an American, said he was "devastated" after putting in "hours upon hours of training" for the bout.

"To come up empty-handed is sad and sad for the sport," he said. "A lot of people missed out on a great fight."

Based on reporting by AP and Interfax