NIGEL BENN has been forced to call off his controversial comeback fight after sustaining a shoulder injury in training. The 55-year-old had been due to face Sakio Bika in a one-off contest sanctioned by the British and Irish Boxing Authority at the Resort World Arena in Birmingham on November 23, but he announced this week that he will not fight again.

“I had to call it quits today,” Benn said in a video message on social media on Monday night. “I was sparring with Craig Richards. I had two cortisone injections, but I wanted to have a hard spar with him today and it just wasn’t happening. My shoulder started playing up, I couldn’t throw the right hand at all.

“I just really want to thank you, for being there through thick and thin. Without you lot I wouldn’t be the man I am today. Today is the day that I hand over the baton to my son, Conor, who’s going to carry on the name. With me, it comes to an end. Thank you for all your support, I don’t know where I’d be without you.”

Everyone at Boxing News wishes Nigel, a true legend of the British game, all the very best for the future.

In other news:

BRITISH star Chris Eubank Junior has only fought once so far in 2019, when he ushered James DeGale into retirement in February. He will return to action on December 7 to fight Matvey Korobov, an amateur star who has suffered professional defeats to Andy Lee and Jermall Charlo, at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn. Eubank will return to middleweight, with a WBA Interim title on offer to the winner of this bout.

“I’m ready to take the United States and the middleweight division by storm,” Eubank said. “I’m excited to come down to 160 pounds where I naturally belong, and I don’t see anybody being able to touch me at this weight class. America is where I learned how to fight as an amateur in Las Vegas and 13 years later I’m finally going to make my U.S. professional debut. I can’t wait to show the fans in the U.S. that I’m the best middleweight in the world.”

“I am more motivated for this fight than any other so far in my career,” said Korobov. “Against Jermall Charlo, I didn’t get the decision. In my mind, I won that fight at Barclays Center. This time around, I will leave no doubt against Eubank. This opportunity gives me a chance to right a wrong. Fans will see the best Matt Korobov on December 7.”

ONE of our ambassadors, former world welterweight champion John H Stracey attended the WBC convention in Cancun, Mexico last week. He spent much of the week with a white Ringside Rest and Care t-shirt in his hand, as well as some boxing gloves, which he demanded everyone sign. They will be auctioned at a later date. He also spoke to WBC president, Mauricio Sulaiman, about the progress we’re making. Great work, John! We now have a new charity bank account and are hoping that people will come forward to make a donation each month by direct debit. Every donation will now allow us to claim for Gift Aid, adding an extra 25p for every £1 donated and the donor gets tax relief! Win-win situation, so please, if you are willing to contribute each month please contact Paul Fairweather, the treasurer, on 07752 322248 for further details.