With his sights set on winning a world middleweight title, Chris Eubank Jnr says his career is over if he can’t get past Conor Benn on October 8, writes Declan Taylor
CHRIS EUBANK JR has vowed to retire from boxing if he loses his transgenerational clash with Conor Benn – and says he is ready to ‘kill himself’ in order to make the contracted weight.
The duo, whose fathers Chris and Nigel created British boxing’s greatest ever rivalry across two brutal fights during the 1990s, will meet at the o2 Arena on October 8 after agreeing a complex deal following weeks of negotiations.
Eubank Jr, who has boxed as high as super-middleweight during his professional career, has agreed to drop down to 157lbs for the contest with Benn, who currently campaigns at welterweight.
Then, after weighing in on the Friday, they will again hit the scales at 11am on fight day with a rehydration clause understood to be well within an extra 10 pounds. It is understood that should either fight miss weight, they must pay a staggering penalty of £125k for every pound over.
Eubank, who said he weighed around 170lbs at Friday’s launch press conference in central London, says he has no intention of incurring any such fine and is a man of his word when it comes to making weight.
The 32-year-old also insisted that defeat to Nigel’s son would force him to draw a line under his 11-year professional career.
“If I lose and he wins then Conor is a superstar who is out of his father’s shadow,” Eubank said. “It’s win-win for him and lose-lose for me.
“If I lose I am finished, I’d have to pack it in. I cannot fight for a middleweight title if I lose and if I win I will get no credit for being too big. It’s lose-lose and all the pressure is on me, I have it all to lose. He is in a great position.
“He will make an absurd amount of money, it’s a great business move on his part but I am going to liquidate him. He’s taking a shot at greatness – I respect that.”
On the weight, Eubank added: “I have never been at this weight since I was 18, It will be tough and very painful and it will kill me to make it.
“The restrictions are fair, because he is coming up but I won’t be 100 per cent. I can’t be when I have to get down and not rehydrate fully.
“If I am 100 per cent it is a public execution, I have to be at a disadvantage to make the fight fair so that is what we have done.”
After Eubank Sr stopped Benn in the initial fight and then played his part in the drawn rematch, one family heads into the showdown undefeated. Benn said: “I will settle the score.
“We both walked the same road and I respect all fighters but we settle the family business in there. The last fight was a draw and now I set the score straight. I believe I want it more but it aint my job to worry about him.
“This fight makes sense for now, a welterweight world title is the goal but this a fantasy fight for the public.
“We were far apart in weight at the start of my career but he was still always mentioned, even before my debut and the stars have aligned for October 8.
“I treat every fight as a world title fight, and it’s the same for this, if I can raise the bar I will but I do it every time anyway, I am young and hungry and motivated for anyone.
“Is there more pressure from the public? Yes but he will feel that as well. It’s full steam ahead.”