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Conor Benn outclasses Sebastian Formella, wins wide decision

Boxing Junkie logo Boxing Junkie 11/21/2020 Michael Rosenthal
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Conor Benn took a significant step in his young career on Saturday night in London.

Benn outclassed Sebastian Formella to win a wide decision in a 10-round welterweight fight, arguably the strongest performance since he turned pro in 2016.

Formella, who went the distance with Shawn Porter on Aug. 22, was seen as the biggest test for the son of Nigel Benn. If so, he gets an “A”.

Benn (17-0, 11 KOs) had too much of everything for his German opponent at SSE Arena. He picked Fromella (22-2, 10 KOs) apart when they fought at an arm’s length – landing the much quicker, harder shots – and got the better of his opponent when they fought toe-to-toe.

Formella was just as resilient against Benn as he was when he fought Porter but, in both fights, solid technique and toughness weren’t enough for him to be competitive.

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Conor Benn arguably gave the strongest performance of his career on Saturday. Mark Robinson / Matchroom Boxing

The loser, realizing after a few rounds that he was ineffective at a distance, demonstrated his courage but pushing the action and engaging Benn inside beginning in the middle rounds. However, he continued to take punishment until the final bell.

Benn’s only flaw was his inability to stop a fighter he dominated but that’s more a testament to Formella’s remarkable toughness than any deficiency on Benn’s part.

The scores were 100-91, 99-91 and 99-92, all for Benn. Porter shut out Formella in a 12-round fight.


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Benn made a strong statement, demonstrating that the top 147-pounders might have their hands full with the 24-year-old Essex resident sometime in the near future.

“I’m getting better every time,” said Benn, who hadn’t fought since he stopped Steve Jamoye in October of last year. “I’m working hard. There is no fun and games. This is all business. …

“I just beat a former [secondary] world champion who went the distance with Shawn Porter. And I beat him just as good.”

Benn isn’t getting carried away after only 17 professional bouts and a limited amateur career. He has his eye on regional rivals for now, not the elite 147-pounders like Errol Spence Jr., Terence Crawford and Manny Pacquiao.

“There’s only one fight I’m interested in, and that’s Josh Kelly,” he said of his fellow British prospect. Forget all the other people calling me out. I don’t care. The only big domestic [opponent] I want is Kelly.”

Promoter Eddie Hearn, standing beside Benn when he was interviewed after the fight, said a Benn-Kelly fight could happen.

Kelly is expected to fight David Avanesyan in January. If Kelly wins that fight and Benn wins once more, Hearn said, Kelly and Benn could meet sometime in the summer.

“That’s a blockbuster for the summer,” Hearn said. “I know [Kelly trainer] Adam Booth would have no problem taking that fight.”

Benn looked wide-eyed at Hearn after he made that comment and asked, “Are you sure?” Hearn responded, “I believe so.”

Benn evidently is on his way.

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