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Benn-Eubank Officially Postponed

By: Sean Crose

Although there had been talk that those behind Saturday’s previously scheduled Conor Benn – Chris Eubank Jr fight were going to try to find some way to keep the match a reality after the British Boxing Board Of Control refused to allow it, promotional outlet Matchroom Boxing announced Thursday that the bout was now being postponed. “After discussions with various parties, we have taken the decision to formally postpone the bout between Chris Eubank Jr. and Conor Benn,” the Eddie Hearn helmed organization stated in a press release.

The fight between the sons of popular and highly successful former fighters (and ring foes) Nigel Benn and Chris Eubank Sr was admittedly an odd one to begin with. Benn, who generally operates as a welterweight agreed to a catchweight of a whopping (for him) 157 pounds, which meant middleweight Eubank had to come in three pounds under his usual weight limit. Still, it was clearly a fight fans – especially in England, where both fighters hail from – were interested in. Unfortunately for those fans, the Voluntary Anti Doping Association (VADA) found traces of the banned substance clomifene in Benn’s system. As a result of that finding, the British Board of Control announced on Wednesday that the bout was to be  “prohibited as it is not in the best interest of Boxing.”

Hearn responded to the ruling by arguing the Board doesn’t base its rulings on VADA testing and that Benn had previously passed similar tests from the UK Anti Doping organization (UKAD). Indeed, Matchroom played the role of a wronged party in Thursday’s press release. “It is undeniable that the British Boxing Board of Control’s decision to withdraw their sanctioning was procedurally flawed and without due process,” the statement read. “That remains a legal issue between the promoters and the Board which we intend to pursue.” 

“However,” Matchroom continued, “whilst there are legal routes to facilitate the fight taking place as planned, we do not believe that it is in the fighters’ interests for those to be pursued at such a late stage, or in the wider interests of the sport. As promoters, we take our obligations and duties very seriously, and a full investigation will now need to take place.  We will be making no further comment at this time and news for ticket holder refunds will follow.”

Clomifene, the substance found in Benn’s system, is generally used as a fertility drug for women, but can increase testosterone in men.

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