Report – Conor Benn vs. Chris Eubank Jr. now off amid positive drug test return this week

Conor Benn
Mandatory Credit: Alamy Stock Photo

According to multiple reports this Thursday afternoon, this weekend’s scheduled O2 Arena clash between Chris Eubank Jr. and Conor Benn, is now officially off – after the latter returned a positive test sample A for the banned substance, clomifene in a test conducted by anti-doping agency, VADA (Voluntary Anti-Doping Association).

Earlier this week, reports detailed how Benn, the son of former world champion, Nigel Benn, had been notified of an adverse finding in his VADA sample A – reportedly testing positive for the banned substance, clomifene. The substance in question is commonly utilised at the end of performance-enhancing drug cycles, and can “significantly” raise serum testosterone and gonadotropin levels. 

As a result of Benn’s positive test sample A return, the BBBofC (British Boxing Board of Control) confirmed that the fight between the former and the above-mentioned, Eubank Jr. was “prohibited”.

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“On the evening of 4th October 2022, the Board of the British Boxing Board of Control Limited resolved that the contest between Chris Eubank Jnr. and Conor Benn scheduled to take place on 8th October 2022 is prohibited as it is not in the interests of Boxing,” BBBC General Secretary, Robert W. Smith said in a statement provided. “That was communicated to the Boxers and Promoters involved on the morning of 5th October 2022.” 

Conor Benn vs. Chris Eubank Jr. reportedly cancelled ahead of Saturday showdown

And as per a report from ESPN reporter, Mike Coppinger, Eubank Jr.’s fight against Benn this weekend in London has been cancelled.

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“The catchweight bout between Conor Benn and Chris Eubank Jr. is now off after Benn’s positive test for a performance-enhancing drug, sources tell ESPN,” Mike Coppinger tweeted. “Fight was scheduled for Saturday in London.” 

With claims that foreign governing bodies and other athletic commissions would still sanction the fight between Eubank Jr. and Benn amid the confirmation from the BBBofC that the matchup was “prohibited”, Matchroom Boxing promoter, Eddie Hearn confirmed he would not seek sanctioning from a foreign governing body.

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“Let’s see what today brings but to make one thing clear,” Eddie Hearn tweeted. “I will not be promoting this fight (between Chris Eubank Jr. and Conor Benn) with a foreign commission or alternative governing body on Saturday night.”

Matchroom Boxing have since released an official statement regarding the fight, confirming the bout’s postponing until a later date.

“After discussions with various parties, we have taken the decision to formally postpone the bout between Chris Eubank Jr. and Conor Benn,” The promotion said in a statement released. “It is undeniable that the British Boxing Board of Contorl’s decision to withdraw their sanctioning was procedurally flawed and without due process. That remains a legal issue between the promoters and the Board which we intend to pursue.”

“However, whilst there are legal routes to facilitate the fight taking place as planned, we do not believe that is in the fighters’ interests for those to be pursued at such a late stage or in the wider interests of the sport. As promoter’s, 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.”