Mikaela Mayer surprised a lot of boxing fans by holding her tongue when the news came out about Alycia Baumgardner’s positive drugs test.
Earlier this month, it was revealed that the undisputed WBA, WBC, IBF and WBO super-featherweight world champion tested positive for metabolities of mesterolone and methenolone acetate.
The test was not taken on July 12, three days before Baumgardner’s rematch win over Christina Linardatou and the results were returned on August 12, long after the fight took place.
When the news broke, many fans were eagerly awaiting Mayer’s response as she shared a heated and entertaining rivalry with Baumgardner, exchanging plenty of trash talk before their fight last year.
Baumgardner was victorious in that bout by a narrow split decision, and now Mayer is concerned as to whether she may have been facing a boxer using performance-enhancing drugs.
“Everyone was coming at me, expecting something,” Mayer told talkSPORT.com, explaining why she did not react to the news when it broke, “But our trash talk before had a purpose, it’s for rivalry and excitement.
“To me, this was a big deal, this is a very serious topic for the sport, very serious allegations for her part.
“I felt like it needed to be addressed more professionally.
“I knew I had a fight coming up and I knew I would be sitting here being asked this very question so I figured I’d wait to address it and see how things played out in the meantime.
“It’s obviously very disappointing, especially being another female in that weight class.
“You always wonder – how long has she been doing that?
“Was this the first time, or was this the first time she got caught?
“A lot of questions now and I feel sorry for her, because her career, her legacy – this is her legacy now.
“She’s gotta figure it out on her own, that’s her problem. I’m not in her weight class anymore, I’m not thinking about Alycia Baumgardner anymore, so she’s gotta worry about clearing her name.”
Mayer, who is set to return against Silvia Bortot on the undercard of the Liam Smith vs Chris Eubank Jr rematch in Manchester, continued: “I think I’ve been pretty naïve to the fact that so many people are doing this.
“To me it’s not something I would ever think of doing, so I’d just sort of assume that other people weren’t doing it.
“But I didn’t realise how common it was. It’s just showing up over and over and over again in the last year.
“I think everybody’s realising this like, ‘Damn, it’s a much bigger problem than we all expected.’
“I just hope they crack down and start instilling a lot more fear in athletes.
“It needs to be more than just a slap on the wrist, it needs to be like serious repercussions so people are afraid and they’re very, very careful about what they put into their body.”