Issue | News | Premium | Sep 28 2019

Why is Nigel Benn returning to the ring at 55 years of age?

Nigel Benn, his son, Conor, and Professor Michael Graham explain to Elliot Worsell why a 55-year-old boxer retired for 23 years needs to fight again
Nigel Benn
Action Images/John Sibley

NIGEL BENN is boxing again not for money or attention but closure and the thought of finding it was enough to have him welling up at a press conference on Thursday (September 26).

With once-fierce eyes filled with tears it became hard not to relate to him on a human level and easier to understand why, at 55 years of age, Benn wants to box Sakio Bika in a bout licenced by the British and Irish Boxing Authority (BIBA) on November 23.

No longer the ‘Dark Destroyer’, Benn is instead calling himself ‘Benjamin Button’ and insists he needs to return to a sport he sadly only associates with low points in his life. Explaining why, he alluded to a career blighted by marital strife, affairs, drug-taking and depression and was honest to a fault, honest in a way that highlighted how rare honesty is in boxing these days.


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