Conor Benn should have been getting ready for the fight of his life. Instead, he has just released a statement assuring fans that he is not using performance enhancing drugs.
It all fell apart this week for ‘The Destroyer’ and those involved in what was set to be one of the biggest British sporting events of the year. Despite some hiccups in the build up, everything was rolling on until the Daily Mail dropped a bombshell – Benn had recently been found to have trace amounts of a banned substance in his test sample, as confirmed by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Agency.
Although Benn, his opponent Chris Eubank Jr, and their promoters all expressed a desire for the event to continue, the British Board of Control revoking their support turned out to be too damning a move to come back from. After a last ditch attempt from the organisers for the fight to go ahead as planned, it has been officially postponed with no date or timeframe provided for rescheduling.
The fight being off for Saturday didn’t come as a surprise – many in the boxing world had expected to hear the news sooner – however it does leave more questions than answers, with a host of undercard fighters now looking to be rescheduled, a main event that captured the nation hanging in the balance, and Benn’s situation with VADA.
Not long after the announcement, he took to Instagram to address the situation.
“I am truly gutted that we were unable to make this fight happen on Saturday and I’m sorry to everyone who has been affected by the postponement.
I am still completely shocked and surprised by this and it has been a tough couple of days. My team and I will consider the next options including rescheduling the fight, but my immediate focus is on clearing my name because I am a clean athlete!”
This certainly won’t be the last we here from the young welterweight, who was on an escalator to world title shots and super stardom. Whether or not this is a set back or a tumble down to earth remains to be seen as more information comes to light.