Chris Eubank Jr set to fight Liam Smith in all-British Christmas cracker after being robbed of mega Conor Benn payday
CHRIS EUBANK JR could save his Christmas stocking with a December 17 cracker against Liam Smith.
The 33-year-old Brighton middleweight was cruelly robbed of his big-money October 8 catchweight clash with Conor Benn when the 26-year-old failed a doping test.
Incredibly the 32-2 star kept to his 159lbs rehydration limit on the morning of the sold-out showdown – just to show his freakish dedication – and he could finally get a decent whack of compensation to end the year on a high.
Talks have started between the two teams over the all-English clash Sky Sports wanted to stage before the Eubank vs Benn circus hit town at the end of last summer.
Liverpool ace Smith, 34, will not have much time to sweat down to 160lbs and prepare properly for the son of British ring legend Chris Sr.
But the former super-welter world champ has regularly been critical of Eubank’s ability, so might not feel he has to be at his best to beat the Hove brawler.
The Liverpool arena is booked up for most of December for festive shows but Manchester has space at its arena, where both men have fought plenty of times.
Smith deserves a major UK fight after losing two world title fights in America – one against Canelo Alvarez in 2016 – and getting robbed last year in Russia.
And a local pay-per-view battle against Eubank Jr – who has enjoyed a huge rise in his popularity over the way he handled the Benn scandal – would be an ideal tonic for some hard losses on the road.
December 17 was the date Matchroom boss Eddie Hearn wanted to reboot Anthony Joshua’s career at Wembley arena but that plan has now been axed, leaving a slot to be filled for fight fans.
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Smith told Sky: “I was open to that fight before he decided to fight Conor and now the Benn fight is off there is probably only one fight in Britain left for him and that’s me.
“It’s an easy fight to make and I think we are both willing to fight each other so I am sure that it can be made.
“I would be ready for December, I fought in September and – by my usual process – I would be ready to go again in December.”
Eubank Jr was happy for the Benn fight to proceed, before the boxing board intervened, because of the medical and scientific data of a failed September 1 test, that was presented to him on the 23rd.
But when SunSport revealed last month that there was a second adverse finding, provided in July and confirmed in August, Jr took to Instagram with a cryptic post.
It read: “What’s done in the darkness always eventually comes to light.”
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