THE British Boxing Board of Control Limited (BBBoC) today confirmed that it has filed an appeal, alongside United Kingdom Anti-Doping (UKAD), in respect of the decision of the independent National Anti-Doping Panel in anti-doping proceedings brought by UKAD against Conor Benn.
Boxing News understands that the National Anti-Doping Panel decided that UKAD could not suspend Benn for two failed tests because they were conducted by Voluntary Anti-Doping Association (VADA), and not UKAD, following a hearing last month.
“The BBBoC has an independent right to appeal the decision and, as the governing body for professional boxing in the United Kingdom and having due regard to its role and responsibilities, has elected to do so,” the Board’s General Secretary Robert Smith said today in a statement. “The BBBoC can also confirm that UKAD has also appealed.
“The said appeal shall be dealt with in accordance with the relevant rules. In accordance with those the BBBoC is unable to comment further at this time.”
The first failed test was conducted by VADA in July 2022, as part of the World Boxing Council’s Clean Boxing Programme, before Conor Benn’s bout with Chris Eubank Jnr had been signed. The results, which revealed clomifene had been found in Benn’s system, were presented to relevant parties at the end of August when both fighters were in training for the bout, scheduled for October 8.
The second test, again conducted by VADA, was part of the random drug testing programme for the contest. It was reported to have taken place on September 1, just days after the results of the first test were released. On September 23, it was disclosed to the relevant parties that the second test also had an adverse finding, with clomifene again the substance in question.
On October 5, the BBBoC announced that they would prohibit the contest. The following day, the promoters – Matchroom Boxing and Wasserman Boxing – confirmed that the contest was cancelled.
It is understood that no adverse findings were discovered in a test conducted by UKAD within the specified timeframe.
Conor Benn, who is “disappointed” by this latest development, remains clear of any suspension but would need to gain Board approval if he wished to fight in the UK before the appeal is heard.