In an unexpected turn of events, undefeated champion Claressa Shields will defend her undisputed WBA, WBC, IBF & WBO middleweight world titles against Marciela Cornejo on June 3rd, following a doping violation by initial contender Hanna Gabriels.
The Voluntary Anti-Doping Association (VADA), as part of the WBC’s Clean Boxing Programme, detected the substance during a routine test, leading to Gabriels’ immediate withdrawal from the high-stakes bout. Details regarding the specific banned substance and the implications for Gabriels’ boxing career have yet to be disclosed.
Claressa Shields vs Marciela Cornejo
Former WBC super middleweight champion Cornejo will now challenge Claressa Shields, known as “T-Rex” and considered one of the best active female boxers after amassing a record to date of 13-0 (2KOs), while Marciela Cornejo goes into the fight with Shields with a record of 16-5-0 (6 KOs).
The surprising switch-up will require both fighters to adapt quickly, promising an exciting matchup with little time to prepare for the opposing styles. Claressa Shields has faced criticism in recent years from boxing fans, with many feeling that Shields does not have a large enough dedicated fan base to headline a boxing event and draw a large enough viewership, something that Shields strongly disagrees with.