Kazuto Ioka Cleared By Japanese Boxing Commission of Doping Charges

Kazuto Ioka has been cleared of any wrongdoing following a doping investigation surrounding the largest win of his profession, though the ruling hasn’t precisely left him in a celebratory temper.

The Japanese Boxing Fee (JBC) confirmed to native media that Ioka (26-2, 15KOs) was now not topic to punishment over allegations of manufacturing a optimistic drug check from his final struggle. The nation’s solely ever male boxer to win 4 divisional titles continued the historic run following an eighth spherical knockout of countryman Kosei Tanaka final New 12 months’s Eve Tokyo. Check outcomes supplied in January revealed the boxer examined optimistic for hashish, with such consequence cleared after the “B” pattern got here again clear—suggesting a false optimistic, per an ethics committee report supplied by an impartial occasion.

Allegations of different stimulants found had been dismissed as a consequence of fee negligence in failing to observe storage procedures, in response to a report from Japan’s Kyodo Information.

“I can not deny the dealing with of the samples was sloppy, and it is a incontrovertible fact that Ioka’s status was tarnished by his title being leaked to the media,” Yuhei Nagata, chairman of the board for JBC said Wednesday. “I wish to meet him in particular person and apologize.”

Ioka will discover different methods to take his victory lap.

“I can not forgive them identical to that,” famous Ioka throughout a press convention of his personal, whose win over Tanaka marked the second protection of his WBO junior bantamweight title. “To be trustworthy I am unsure if I can maintain preventing with peace of thoughts. This factor blew up and for a month and a half modified my life utterly.

“I assumed that this is able to be the top of my profession.”

Ioka—by means of his authorized workforce—vehemently denied any use of efficiency enhancing medication from the second such prices had been made in opposition to him. The manufactured scandal marked his second brush with controversy stemming from his win over Tanaka.

The 32-year-old boxer needed to seem earlier than the fee concerning his showing within the ring with seen tattoos, a apply which stays frowned upon by the JBC by means of its antiquated guidelines. Ioka was finally let off with a stern warning from the no-nonsense fee.

Information of Ioka’s subsequent struggle has but to be confirmed, although there have been ongoing talks of his returning to america. Ioka made his approach stateside simply as soon as earlier than as a professional, coming in his comeback struggle in September 2018 following a 17-month ring absence. His U.S. debut was properly celebrated in a 10-round factors win over McWilliams Arroyo, who has since claimed an interim title at flyweight.

Ioka sought to make historical past for his nation three months later, difficult Philippines’ Donnie Nietes for the vacant WBO junior bantamweight title in a bout the place each sought to turn into a four-division champ. Nietes beat him to that purpose, scoring a disputed 12-round cut up resolution on New 12 months’s Eve 2018, earlier than vacating the belt. Ioka claimed the crown in a tenth spherical stoppage of Aston Palicte in June 2019, having twice efficiently defended the title.

Plans for an additional U.S. invasion had been positioned on maintain pending the newest investigation. Even in being cleared of any wrongdoing in relation to PEDs, there are nonetheless laborious conversations available concerning subsequent steps in his storied profession and restoring the respect he has at all times deserved.

“I have been eager for today,” notes Ioka, who has received titles at strawweight, junior flyweight, flyweight and junior bantamweight. “I’ve nothing to really feel responsible about relating to boxing.”

Jake Donovan is a senior author for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox

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