EXCLUSIVE: Conor Benn decides against Rio 2016 bid, aims to turn pro

Young prospect Conor Benn has informed WBN that he is no longer intent on competing at the 2016 Olympics in Rio and will be turning professional.

The 18 year-old had originally planned to win gold at next year’s summer games. But having moved to Manchester to link up with Ricky Hatton, Benn and his former world champion father Nigel have decided to head into the pros.

Hatton spent time with Benn Sr. earlier this year to thrash out a plan for Conor going forward. A move into the paid ranks is seen as the best option once Benn Jr. fully gets into his stride with the ‘Hitman’ at his Hyde gym.

“Training with Ricky Hatton is a privilege for me. He has taught me so much within the short period of time being with him,” Conor exclusively told World Boxing News.

“I am looking forward to doing a lot more work with him. The goal at the moment is to get a few more amateur bouts under my belt. Eventually to turn pro next year.

“At the minute, we don’t have any fights lined up. First, I have to get used to Ricky’s method of fighting. What he wants me to do. But hopefully, around November time I will be back in the ring.

“As for the Olympics, my dad and I have decided that it’s best to turn pro. To slowly build into the style. So I can’t wait. I’m hungry,” he added.


Once Benn does ditch the vest and head guard, there will no doubt be some frenzied talk of a potential future match-up with current interim WBA middleweight champion Chris Eubank Jr. given the fact that their dad’s shared one of the sports’ biggest rivalries.

Although that fight is debatable due to the weight, it’s at least five or six years from taking place.

For now, Benn needs to be allowed to mature into his own fighter first. And to brush off the inevitable comparisons that will no doubt be forthcoming.