Boxing: Jarrell Miller fails third drugs test, fight against Anthony Joshua cancelled

American heavyweight boxer Jarrell Miller has failed a second and third drugs test for banned substances, ending any hope of fighting Anthony Joshua.

Days after the 30-year-old was denied a New York State boxing licence because GW1516 (a fat burner supplement) was found in his system from a urine sample taken on March 20, ESPN has reported Miller has failed two more tests.

The results from a blood sample collected from Miller by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association (VADA) on March 31 have tested were positive for human growth hormone (HGH), which is on the World Anti-Doping Agency banned list.

A urine sample collected on the same date returned positive results, EPO, which increases the oxygen-carrying capacity of blood, and GW1516.

Miller was scheduled to fight Joshua at Madison Square Garden on June 2 (NZ time). 

He has since come out and admits he "messed up" and says he will "own up" to his mistake.

"Salita Promotions and Greg Cohen Promotions are very disappointed in these findings and feel awful fight fans will be deprived of what would have been a great fight," Dmitriy Salita and Greg Cohen, Miller's co-promoters, told ESPN in a joint statement.

"It's a terrible outcome and unfortunate situation for all parties involved."

Joshua's promoter Eddie Hearn said he was shocked with the news, but he needs to work quickly to find a replacement

"To be honest I can't believe it. You always want to give an athlete the benefit of the doubt, but this leaves no doubt," Hearn told ESPN.

"It worries me that fighters feel the only way they can beat AJ is by taking banned substances. One thing we know is Miller is out. AJ's new opponent for June 1 will be announced next week. Clean fighters only need apply."

Miller, who was due to fight for the WBA, IBF, WBO and IBO titles, claimed he was innocent after the first failed test.

"I am absolutely devastated upon hearing the news my boxing license has been revoked in NY State, and I will be vigorously appealing this decision," he said in an Instagram post.

"I have never knowingly taken any banned substance, and when I found out the news last night, I was totally shocked.

"This was a voluntarily test that I was very happy to do and these results came just one week after another voluntarily test that I had taken, which was completely clean.

"I refuse to just lie down and let my dream be taken away from me, when I know in my heart that I've done nothing wrong.

"I don't have anything to hide, and the truth will make itself known."

Among those under consideration to replace Miller are Cuba's Luis Ortiz, Poland's Adam Kownacki, American Michael Hunter and Colombian Oscar Rivas.

Joseph Parker threw his name into the mix but Hearn was quick to dismiss the Kiwi, saying he wasn't an option.