Benn vs Van Heerden LIVE: Latest updates and undercard results

Conor Benn vs Chris van Heerden LIVE: ‘The Destroyer’ looks to move one step closer to a world title shot as he faces another acid test against a tricky southpaw… but first up is jam-packed undercard in Manchester

Here is Sportsmail’s live blog for updates on Conor Benn vs Chris van Heerden, as well as full coverage of the undercard.  

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Up first tonight we have Bolton-born Jack Cullen, who returns to the ring for the first time since suffering a TKO defeat to Kevin Lele Sadjo last year.

The 28-year-old (20-3-1) was left bitterly disappointed after he fall short in his attempt to win the vacant European super-middleweight title.

Cullen will be hoping to fare better against tonight’s opponent Vladimir Belujsky (12-3-1), who is on a five-fight winning streak.

The Briton insisted ‘I wasn’t myself’ following his defeat last time out. Let’s see if he can produce the business tonight.

The stage is set! The Manchester Arena is ready and braced for another massive night of boxing. 

Can Conor Benn move to 21-0 and do it in style? And if so, will Benn’s next fight be against an elite welterweight? 

Benn looked phenomenal on the scales on Friday, and he looks in great shape to deliver another stunning performance. Not long now…

But first, the main card is upon us!

Right then, we’re about ready to get underway in Manchester, with the main card getting started any minute. 

This is what’s in store tonight:

Conor Benn vs Chris van Heerden
Chris Billam-Smith vs Tommy McCarthy
Alycia Baumgardner vs Edith Soledad Matthysse
Campbell Hatton vs Ezequiel Gregores
Jack Cullen vs Vladimir Belujsky

Promoter Eddie Hearn insists tonight is Benn’s final test before he steps in against the welterweight elite. 

‘The growth of Conor Benn is astonishing,’ Hearn told Sportsmail. ‘I don’t say that disrespectfully, but when I first watched him… to think he’s on the verge of a welterweight world title is incredible.

‘It’s all down to his mindset, his work ethic, the work Tony Simms has done – and obviously the genes as well, they help.

‘But this is his final test before he goes into the real deep end.’

Both fighters comfortably made weight as they took to the scales on Friday afternoon.

Benn weighed in at 146.5lbs, while Van Heerden also had no problems, coming in at 145.8lbs.

Both fighters then engaged in a face-off, separated by Benn’s promoter Eddie Hearn.

Benn, speaking at Thursday’s press conference, insisted he will throw everything at his opponent tonight.

‘If I see an opportunity I’m going to take it and try take him out,’ he said. ‘He’s saying I can’t box, which was a headline I believe I read.

‘He’s backtracking now, but last time I checked Algieri got outboxed and knocked out, unconscious. I can do both, ask Sebastian Formella. I’ve had 13 knockouts out of 20 fights – what were all the rest then, because I won them quite convincingly?

‘He can think what he wants, at the end of the day, but when I get in there I’m down to business. And if I see an opportunity, mark my words, if I see a slight opening I will take it, I will throw everything at him.

‘All I’ve got to see is a little twinge, a little eye-twitch and I’m on him.’

Read more below. 

Before we look ahead to tonight’s main event, let’s first take a quick glance at the results from the undercard so far.

First up at the Manchester Arena was James Metcalf, who stopped Evgeni Vazem in the fifth round of their clash.

11-0 Luke Evans was up next against Miguel Cesario Antin in the super-lightweight division, in a bout that ended a draw.

In the third pre-televised fight, Thomas Whittaker-Hart beat Ben Ridings on points, and finally Jordan Thompson destroyed Mariano Angel Gudino to maintain his unbeaten run.

With the eagerly-anticipated bout between Benn and Van Heerden swiftly approaching, Sportsmail takes you through everything you need to know.

The fighters are expected to take to the ring at around 10.30pm, though that will depend on the undercard results. It will be shown live on DAZN. 

Of course, Benn and Van Heerden take centre-stage tonight, but there’s also an abundance of action on the undercard.

Most notably is a clash between Chris Billam-Smith and Tommy McCarthy, with the latter looking to avenge his split decision defeat last year. Again, the British and European cruiserweight belts are on the line.

The main card is as followed:
Conor Benn vs Chris van Heerden
Chris Billam-Smith vs Tommy McCarthy
Alycia Baumgardner vs Edith Soledad Matthysse
Campbell Hatton vs Ezequiel Gregores
Jack Cullen vs Vladimir Belujsky

A big night of boxing action is upon us, as Conor Benn and Chris van Heerden clash in an enticing welterweight encounter.

Two fighters at opposing ends of their careers, Benn looks to continue his drive towards a world title shot, while Van Heerden hopes to push back up the division.

Benn, 20-0, is on the periphery of a world title shot, following three stunning performances last year. But in Van Heerden, he faces the first southpaw of note in his pro career.

Don’t go anywhere as we build towards the main event, with Campbell Hatton and Alycia Baumgardner in action. There’s also an exciting rematch between Chris Billam-Smith and Tommy McCarthy. We’ll provide round-by-round updates throughout.

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