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Conor Benn wants Keith Thurman: “Let’s make the fight”

Image: Conor Benn wants Keith Thurman: "Let's make the fight"

By Barry Holbrook: Conor Benn says he wants to face former WBA/WBC welterweight champion Keith Thurman next if he’s up for it. Benn (21-0, 14 KOs) says Thurman stated that he’d never heard of him, which he feels is hard to believe because he’s well-known by fighters at 147.

Thurman had been a name that was mentioned as a possible opponent for IBF, WBA & WBC welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr to face in April, but that contest failed to come off.

The 34-year-old Thurman (30-1, 22 KOs) hasn’t fought since February 2022, when he defeated former WBA light welterweight champion Mario Barrios by a one-sided twelve-round unanimous decision.

Benn, 26, would be a good option for Thurman, as long as he didn’t mind facing someone that twice tested positive for the banned substance clomifene.

One problem with Thurman fighting Benn is where the contest would take place. With Benn unlicensed in the UK, the options are limited regarding locations. It’s unlikely the fight could take place in the U.S., and unclear whether the Middle East would be interested in staging that fight.

Unless Benn’s promoter Eddie Hearn can persuade the Saudis to place the fight in their country, it’s questionable whether there’s a location that would work for a Thurman-Benn match. Perhaps a tiny island might work.

Conor Benn wants Keith Thurman

“It should be [realistic] because last time we tried to make the fight Keith Thurman said he didn’t know who I was, which is beyond me because everyone in the welterweight division knows who I am,” said Conor Benn to Boxing Social.

“Let’s make the fight; why not? I said to the team, ‘Why not?’ He was meant to fight Spence, but Spence is showing no interest. If he wants to fight, I’m here to fight. I’ll fight him tomorrow.”

“I’m just sitting here waiting. There are loads of people calling my name. They see it as a payday. I was willing to jump up to 160 to make a big fight happen [against Chris Eubank Jr]. I don’t shy away from nobody. If you’re ahead of me, I want you. That’s it.

“If anyone is ahead of me, let’s go. We tried to make the [Yordenis] Ugas fight, but [trainer Ismael] Salas said he has no interest in making the Ugas fight. You got to look at it through their eyes. They’re scared because it doesn’t make sense for them.

“I’m here for those fights. Ugas, Barrios, [Jose] Ramirez, any of those names. We can make those fights,” said Benn.

On fighting Gervonta Davis

“No, it’s not realistic. He’s tiny; he comes up to my waist,” said Benn when asked if a fight between him and Gervonta Davis was ‘realistic’ after he mentioned him on Instagram.

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