BBB Of C Head Robert Smith Says No To Conor Benn – Chris Eubank Jr Fight Taking Place In The UK

By James Slater - 11/29/2023 - Comments

Just yesterday, a news article ran in The Mail that said the big British grudge match between Conor Benn and Chris Eubank Jr is being finalised, with the fight expected to be announced later on this week, the fight to take place at Tottenham Hotspur Arena on February 3rd. But today, British Boxing Board of Control head Robert Smith told Talk Sport that he has refused Benn’s application to box in the UK.

Fans of course are fully aware of how Benn failed two drugs tests last year, this scuppering the fight with Eubank Jr, which was all set for October. Benn has vehemently denied any wrongdoing and he was permitted to return to the ring this year, when he fought in Florida, Benn’s suspension lifted by the National Anti-Doping panel, but that decision is being appealed by both the BBB of C and UKAD.

Smith explained his stance today.

“The Board feel that any athlete, not just a boxer, but any athlete who has failed a drugs test needs to go through an investigation with the proper authorities and that hasn’t happened,” Smith told Talk Sport. “We’re waiting for that to happen and the Boxing Board and UKAD have been pushing for that to happen right from the beginning of this and unfortunately it’s been delayed, not through the Boxing Board of Control or UKAD, but through other parties. With regard to Mr. Benn boxing in this country, we have had an application for him to box in this country, that has been refused. They can put out what they want ultimately, but they haven’t been through the proper authorities and as I said before we’re really keen to get this done right from the beginning.”

So, it seems that if Benn Vs. Eubank Jr is to happen still, it will be happening abroad, and apparently it has already been suggested that the fight could take place in Abu Dhabi. Some fans may feel as though Benn is being treated differently to other fighters who failed a drugs test, with Benn being ‘singled out’ so to speak. Certainly, Benn and his promoter Eddie Hearn feel the welterweight contender has been victimized.

It will be interesting to hear what Benn and Hearn have to say about Smith’s comments and his refusing the application for Benn to fight in the UK. It goes without saying how neither man will be at all happy.