Boxer Sabrina Perez’s Trainer Collapses Ringside And Then Dies, Amir Khan Addresses His Failed Test

November 15, 2023
8 months

Boxer Sabrina Perez’s husband and her boxing trainer, Diego Arrua, has passed away after suffering from a heart attack.

Arrua had been in the corner of his wife, Perez, during her fight with Skye Nicholson. And given that the WBC interim featherweight belt was on the line, both fighters had a lot to play for.

During the course of that process, Arrua was giving his wife instructions when tragedy struck in the ninth round. The trainer happened to collapse ringside, as medical personnel intervened to take Arrua out on a stretcher. Thereafter, Arrua passed away in hospital as the tributes came pouring in.

Perez’s Husband Dies

“It is with deep sadness that we have been informed of the sudden death of Argentine coach Diego [Arrua], who suffered a devastating heart attack during the Sabrina Perez fight in Tijuana. The medical services did everything possible and he died at the QDEP general hospital,” Mauricio Sulaiman (WBC President) said 

Although the fight did end up being completed, as Nicholson won via a unanimous decision, Perez’s future in the sport may be in doubt.

The boxer will have to decide whether she is willing to continue later down the line. After all, she is without her husband and now former trainer. In addition, Perez will most likely need some time out before deciding what is the best course of action.

Regardless of what Perez ends up doing, Nicholson was also impacted by the tragic news.

Nicholson On Perez’s News

“Today I’m leaving Tijuana with a heavy heart. All of my thoughts and prayers are with Sabrina Pérez and her family during this incredibly painful and horrible time. My heart is broken for this warrior and I can’t even imagine what she is going through,” Nicholson stated 

Amir Khan’s Failed Test

Meanwhile, Amir Khan has spoken about his failed test following the Kell Brook fight.

Khan failed a test for Ostarine, a substance that is known for enhancing muscle growth. The findings resulted in the boxer being banned for two years, although Khan admitted that he had not done anything intentionally.

The findings did not look good in light of the fact that Conor Benn, Dillian Whyte, Robert Helenius and Alycia Baumgardner were some of the other high-profile athletes to have failed tests.

Therefore, there is a growing perception that boxing is struggling to deal with performance enhancing drugs. And given the need to set a precedent with harsh measures, Khan wanted to clarify the circumstances around his failed test.

“If you look at the amount that was found in my blood — everyone has said this, but — UKAD [UK Anti-Doping] have done a statement. They said that it’s unintentional, and instead of giving me a four-year ban, they gave me a two-year ban. You know why? Because I didn’t have the source to prove how it got into my system. If I’d given them the source of how it got into my system, I would have won the case. It’s not like I lost the case, because they said that I didn’t cheat. I’m not a cheater. It’s a bit of a sad thing,” Khan

Nevertheless, Khan’s legacy appears to be intact. The failed test ultimately came during the last fight of his career. It was clear that he was not the same fighter. And ultimately during the peak of his career, when he won titles at 140 pounds, the boxer did not fail a single test.

While that may have been the case, there will always be a question mark over whether boxer’s were simply sophisticated in avoiding getting caught.

But with the increasing number of athletes failing tests now, there can be no denying that there is an issue that needs tackling. That is why Khan admitted that he had he not retired, he would have attempted to prove his innocence.

“I’d have gone to UKAD and done a full investigation and made sure my name come out clean. It was just because I retired [that I didn’t]. It makes no difference. I’m not going to fight again. But the [uncertainty, from the public’s perspective… It could have been from drinking from someone’s drink. A lot of my friends are on steroids, because they want to be big. The new thing is that everyone wants to be on steroids. I might have shared a drink with someone. But I’ve never cheated in boxing,” Khan

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