Nigel Benn has denied recent retirement confirmation came of the back of an assessment of his ability to compete at the age of 55.
‘The Dark Destroyer’ cancelled plans for comback, 23 years on from his last bout. This was due to a shoulder injury suffering in training.
With less than a month to go, Benn was grafting in camp when the ailment became apparent.
Due to fight ex-WBC title holder Sakio Bika, Benn is devastated his dream has now gone.
But once the news broke, instant speculation began, which Benn has moved to quash.
“After sustaining a shoulder injury in training, Nigel Benn regrets to inform his fans and supporters that will not be fit to box on November 23rd.
“Father time has NOT caught up with him at all. His preparation and sparring had actually progressed better than expected at this stage of his preparation,” the information insisted.
Elaborating further, it continued: “Nigel had several anti-inflammatory injections, primarily into one shoulder joint last week. This treatment has failed in its efforts to reduce the acute pain that is significantly affecting his punching power and full movement on one side.
“He is devastated at this setback. Years of organisation has gone into this event. Many people (aside from himself) will be affected by his inability to fight.
“This setback will likely mean that he will never get the closure he sought. In his own words “I hope my fans will respect that I have no say in this decision.”
Further rumours of poor ticket sales have since kicked Benn while he was down.
The British legend has promised to refund those who no longer wish to attend, that’s IF the show goes ahead without him.
“Please accept my apologies for any inconvenience this may cause to my loyal fans who have bought tickets,” said Benn. “(Also, the) undercard fighters, the venue, suppliers and anyone else who is affected by my announcement. God bless you all,” he added.
“The venue (Resorts World Arena) and the 2 appointed ticket agencies – The Ticket Factory and Eventim are currently in dialogue organisers in an effort to rescue the event. That’s given the fact ten fights are still arranged.
“However, refunds for ticket holders are available from the respective agents upon request.”