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Trainers say fighters grow from work, not doping

Trainers for Manny Pacquiao and Juan Manuel Marquez say hard work and fitness, not performance-enhancing drugs, have allowed their fights to add muscle and power as they move up in weight classes.

Doping has been an issue for both fighters in Saturday's welterweight fight between Filipino icon Pacquiao, with world titles in a record eight weight classes, and Mexico's Marquez, who seeks a world crown in his fourth division. Unbeaten US star Floyd Mayweather failed to make a deal for a megafight with Pacquiao in part because he wanted more extensive blood tests than usual, issuing taunts that prompted "PacMan" to file a slander lawsuit.

Twitter notes

Marquez's bulking up for the fight came under greater scrutiny after Twitter notes from Victor Conte, the central figure in the BALCO steroid scandal, revealed that Marquez's strength and conditioning coach is Angel Heredia.

Heredia admitted providing performance-enhancing substances to Trevor Graham, the former coach of disgraced dope cheats Marion Jones and Tim Montgomery as well as other former US athletics stars.

"There are different ways to get a fighter very strong. We've done it the right way," Ignacio Beristain, Marquez's trainer, said through a translator. "I don't see why somebody should doubt we have done it the right way."

Marquez denies his bigger bulk has come through banned substances and has said he will take random blood or urine tests to prove he is not a dope cheat.

Preparation

"I have done a clean preparation for this fight like always," Marquez said through a translator. "I will take any test any time. That's why anti-doping exams exist.

"It's a shame all the work I've done has been trashed." Beristain said Thursday that his man received no help from banned substances, but was aided by nutrition and technique guidance from Heredia.

"I'm grateful for what he did with my fighter. I got a great guy who is strong," Beristain said.

"Juan would never do anything wrong. If he came to Juan with something, I know he wouldn't take it. I know Juan well enough to know that. AFP

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