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Evening Standard
Evening Standard
Matt Majendie

Chris Eubank Jr vs Conor Benn: Eddie Hearn eyeing December 23 grudge match in Cardiff

Eddie Hearn is pushing for Conor Benn to fight Chris Eubank Jr in Cardiff before Christmas.

The pair’s original bout was due to take place last October but was called off when Benn failed a drugs test.

The independent National Anti-Doping Panel (NADP) lifted Benn’s provisional suspension, which was then appealed by UK Anti-Doping (UKAD) and the British Boxing Board of Control (BBBoC).

As a result, Benn, who has repeatedly denied any wrongdoing, does not have a licence to box in the UK and made his comeback after 17 months out of the ring by outpointing Mexican Rodolfo Orozco in Florida last month.

But Matchroom boss Hearn said he was confident that there was legally no reason to halt the fight from going ahead and is pushing for a U-turn on Benn’s boxing licence.

Targeting a December 23 fight at the Principality Stadium, Hearn told BBC Radio 5 live: “We have every intention to make it happen.

“Our side with Conor Benn and the side of Kalle Sauerland and Chris Eubank want to move forward and make that fight.

“We feel that because of the situation with Conor Benn’s suspension being lifted and winning that case that he should be allowed and able to fight in the UK.

“We’re speaking to the British Boxing Board of Control. We think legally there’s no reason why he shouldn’t be allowed to fight in the UK but obviously that’s their decision.”

Hearn said talks were still ongoing about a potential fight between Anthony Joshua and Deontay Wilder but that, if it didn’t go through, the former could fight on the Benn-Eubank Jr card in December.

However, the promoter said he was looking at other options with Benn currently without a licence to box in the UK.

“If we are not allowed to do that,” he said, “we will hold the fight internationally but our preference of course is to bring that big fight to Britain.

“There’s a huge desire from both camps of Benn and Eubank to make that fight happen for December 23.”

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