Conor Benn admits he doesn’t want his newborn son to become a boxer and says he often REGRETS following in his famous father’s footsteps ahead of the toughest fight of his career against Samuel Vargas
- Conor Benn’s world title ambitions will be put to the test against Samuel Vargas
- Been said he wouldn’t have boxed like his dad Nigel if he had his time again
- The welterweight has won all of 17 fights as a professional with 11 knockouts
- He recently had a son and said he doesn’t want him to follow in his footsteps
Conor Benn does not want his newborn son to continue the family’s fighting heritage, insisting he often regrets ever following in his own father’s footsteps.
Benn’s wife Victoria gave birth to Eli back in January and this weekend the British welterweight can move closer towards a world title with victory over Samuel Vargas.
Conor’s vast improvements have helped shrink the shadow of his father Nigel, one of Britain’s most loved fighters who won belts at both middleweight and super-middleweight. But the 24-year-old wants Eli to move into accountancy or anything ‘normal’. Anything but boxing.
Conor Benn’s world title ambitions will be put to the test against Samuel Vargas this weekend
Benn recently welcomed his son Eli (centre) with wife Victoria (left) and admitted he would not want him to become a professional boxer
‘I don’t want my son to fight,’ he said. ‘Be something peaceful, don’t even be famous. Being known presents its own struggles and you’ve always got a target on your back. Be something normal – an accountant, a lawyer, I don’t know.’
The welterweight admits the criticism that comes with life in the limelight has occasionally left him regretting not staying Down Under – where he grew up comfortable thanks to Nigel’s fine career.
‘If I am honest, if I could go back now, I probably would have stayed in Australia cooking on the barbeque with my dad, enjoying life and not having to worry,’ Benn said.
‘I do sometimes think I am mad for not choosing that life, I really mean that… the critics really can drain away at your love for the sport, it can make you not enjoy boxing. I love the fighting, the fighting is the best bit, but those small sections of the public can hurt.’
Benn admitted he often regrets following in footsteps of his famous fighting father Nigel (L)
His father Nigel won world titles at two weights and is one of Britain’s most beloved fighters
Benn recently reached out to Campbell Hatton, who is attempting to emulate his own fighting father, Ricky. The 19-year-old has already faced criticism and comparisons after one professional fight.
‘Some of the stuff I see makes me sick to the core, it really got me going. There is such vile stuff on Twitter from real scumbags and it gets my back up,’ Benn said.
‘I remember how I felt when I was getting the same treatment. So for him to be getting it now, it upsets me.’ Benn added: ‘I just told him to focus on himself and be his own person. He has chosen the hardest sport in the world – how can you not respect that?’
Nigel didn’t want Conor to fight either but the 24-year-old is now exceeding everyone’s expectations – including his own. ‘It was a fluke at first,’ he laughed. ‘”Let’s see how far we go”. I didn’t think it would be very far… I was getting paid alright, walking around saying “I’m a boxer”.’
Benn, 24, has exceeded everyone’s expectations and has won all 17 of his fights with 11 KOs
He can move a step closer to a world title shot if he beats Vargas (right), who once shared the ring with ex-champion Amir Khan back in 2018
He added: ‘It’s all fun and games at first… I thought I’d do it up until it all comes crashing down – but it hasn’t.’ The ‘turning point’ came when he beat Brando Sanudo in New York in 2017. ‘I thought: “Corr, I might actually be alright you know.” ‘Then I flew back and got put down by (Cedrick) Peynaud twice in the first round and I thought “OK maybe not then”.’
Now, though, Benn is eyeing fights with the likes of Amir Khan and Kell Brook and hopes to be pushing towards world honours by the end of the year.
‘I’ve just got to win a world title once, just once. Then I’ll be a very happy man,’ he said. ‘How sweet will it be for me and the team after everyone wrote me off from the get go.’
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