Boxing

Khan? Broner? Who’s next for Benn?

With Conor Benn winning his 19th professional bout on Saturday night, could Bolton’s Amir Khan or American star Adrien Broner be next? The fighting pride of Ireland, Katie Taylor, moves closer to a super fight with Amanda Serrano, while Deontay Wilder treats us to an underwater training montage ahead of Tyson Fury rematch and promoter Eddie Hearn dominates the punchbag.

Fight Talk provides your weekly fix of boxing news.

Who’s next for Benn?

When welterweight contender Conor Benn made his professional debut in 2016, few predicted his career would turn out as promising as it has.

The son of British legend Nigel Benn had some big shoes to fill and, with little amateur pedigree, a very raw style and unconvincing early performances, fans were unsure if he could live up to the name.

But the 24-year-old has progressed at a rapid rate and his improvements in the ring, coupled with his intense demeanour outside, has won over many.

He maintained his unbeaten run when he outpointed Adrian Granados in Leeds.

Benn – who has knocked out 12 of his opponents so far – was the clear winner on all three judges’ scorecards, but his American opponent also felt he did enough.

Post-fight, in the changing rooms, the two were still exchanging verbal jabs…

So who should Benn take on next?

Promoter Eddie Hearn has suggested former world champion Amir Khan as a potential match-up.

It’s an encounter which will undoubtedly excite the British public.

Khan, 34, has achieved so much in the sport, but is in the twilight of his career, while Benn has the opportunity to add a big-name victory to his resume.

However, former Olympic silver medallist Khan is instead rumoured to be closing in on a deal to fight long-time rival Kell Brook, 35, later this year.

A more likely opponent is brash American Broner.

Hearn describes it as “the perfect fight”, while Benn himself told Talksport: “I’ll have Broner next. I’ll have Broner here at the O2, I’ll have him at a stadium out in America – it doesn’t bother me.”

A win over four-division world champion Broner, 32, would announce Benn to the American and international audiences.

Meanwhile, there are plenty of lesser-known rivals also calling him out…

While Benn still has a long way to go to hit the heights of his dad, there is no doubt the journey will be an exciting one.

Taylor sets up Serrano mega fight

The 20,000 fans in Leeds also witnessed undisputed lightweight world champion Katie Taylor, 35, defend her titles with a points win over USA’s Jennifer Han.

Ireland’s Taylor – a 2012 Olympic gold medallist – has played a significant role in raising the profile of women’s boxing over the past decade and moves to 19 straight wins in the professional ranks.

Her success also sets up a mouth-watering clash against Puerto Rico’s seven-weight world champion Serrano, 32, at Madison Square Garden in 2022.

The two were due to meet in 2020 before it was called off due to the pandemic, but the fire for a Taylor-Serrano match-up is still burning, although fans are split on who would come out on top…

Fans on Twitter discuss Katie Taylor v Amanda Serrano. One fan says "Serrano wins", while another says "Taylor on points"

Another option for Taylor could be a rematch against Liverpool’s Natasha Jonas after their thrilling contest in May, which Taylor edged on points.

Jonas’ trainer believes his fighter has earned the right to go toe-to-toe with the champion again…

And Northampton’s undefeated WBC super-lightweight world champion Chantelle Cameron is also being touted as an opponent…

Wilder looking to make a splash

In just over a month, WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury will take on American Deontay Wilder for a third time.

The first clash in 2018 was a draw before Fury convincingly beat Wilder by stoppage in February 2020.

Neither has been in the ring since and a consecutive victory for Fury should put to bed the rivalry.

Fury will be favourite on 9 October in Las Vegas, but Wilder is one of the most devastating one-punch knockout artists in the division.

Wilder has recently been updating fans on his gruelling preparations and posted a video this week of some underwater training which wouldn’t be misplaced in a Rocky montage…

‘Eddie Hearn v Logan Paul? Huge PPV event’

And finally, Matchroom Boxing’s Eddie Hearn represents some of the biggest names in the sport, but the promoter showed he’s more than just a suit this week when he unleashed a solid right hand on the punch machine…

Cue some Twitter trolling…

Fans on Twitter react to Eddie Hearn's punchbag challenge. Responses include: "It's not a long jump, you can't have a run up", "Eddie Hearn v Logan Paul? Huge PPV event", "Eddie sleeps Fury tbh" and "wiry frame makes him vulnerable to the body"Around the BBC iPlayer bannerAround the BBC iPlayer footer


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