- Michael Woods, Boxing
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As of Sunday afternoon, it does appear we have a fight.
The PED-testing issue continued to loom over the April 13 showdown between 122-pounders Nonito Donaire and Guillermo Rigondeaux, as Donaire started to suspect on Friday and Saturday that Rigo wasn't taking the issue of stringent doping testing as seriously as he was.
"Rigo has not started testing in VADA bc he left no whereabout addresses AND NO phone numbers to find him," Donaire relayed to his fans on Facebook, adding that to his knowledge, Team Rigo hadn't set in motion as of Saturday afternoon the testing protocol they demanded be undertaken by Volunary Anti-Doping Agency rival USADA.
I reached out to Rigo's manager, Gary Hyde, to shed some light on the continuing saga.
"VADA has received the information which wasn't on the agreement," he explained. "Basically, Rigo could not fill in the address where he will be staying when he is in camp because he hadn't decided on which house he was going to rent. However, he has decided now and his trainer, Pedro Diaz, has provided this information to VADA. USADA have not been contacted yet but this will be done on Monday."
So, could and would Rigo submit a specimen for testing as early as Monday to VADA?
"Of course, but Nonito doesn't make the rules," Hyde said.
Is he still confident Rigo fights Donaire on April 13 at Radio City Music Hall?
"One hundred percent, unless Donaire chickens out!" Hyde said.
Sunday at noon, Hyde said he "just received an e-mail from VADA confirming that they are in receipt of all information needed to process Rigo's VADA screening agreement."
So, as of now, it looks like the fight is a go. But be prepared for some more jockeying back and forth regarding the testing and testers. This will be the new normal in some cases as we continue to try and find sanity and clarity in the PED-in-boxing realm.