Conor Benn stuns Samuel Vargas with first-round knockout

Conor Benn celebrates
Benn (left) needed just 80 seconds to overcome the experienced Vargas

Conor Benn produced the most destructive display of his career to knockout Samuel Vargas in 80 seconds.

The British welterweight was expected to face a test against an experienced rival but he pounced on an opening.

Two right-left combinations rocked Colombia’s Vargas, a barrage of punches followed and a hard uppercut on the ropes saw the bout stopped.

“Start putting respect on my name,” said Benn. “I’m putting the Benn name where it belongs – back at the top.”

The son of former two-weight world champion Nigel Benn added: “No-one had banged him out in a round. Easy, easy. Give me a proper test, give me Amir Khan. He’s too busy messing about with reality shows.

“I can live with this hype. I’m ready for the top dogs, I want them, I want to test myself. I was expecting a hard fight.”

‘I’ll be cleaning up’ – Benn

Conor Benn punches Samuel Vargas
Promoter Eddie Hearn wants Benn to now pursue the European title

Vargas had lost six times in 39 previous outings but it had taken stellar names such as Khan, and Americans Errol Spence Jr and Danny Garcia to out-do him.

Khan needed the judges’ cards to get the job done, while Spence and Garcia required four rounds and seven rounds respectively.

While some may say Vargas’ best days are behind him, few saw him being blown away in such fashion.

The 31-year-old protested the stoppage but he was under fierce attack and offering nothing in response as 24-year-old Benn picked ruthless shots to close out his 18th win in as many outings.

“My dad says when you see the opening, pounce on him,” Benn told BBC Radio 5 Live from London’s Copper Box Arena. “That was the last message from him.

“When I hit him I felt ‘there is no way you will live up to these punches’. I am not even in my prime and I’m knocking out geezers. Wait until I’m 28, 29, 30 – I’m cleaning up.

“Why should I not be confident in my ability. People don’t like that but I work way too hard to not be confident.”

Promoter Eddie Hearn said he hopes Benn now targets the European title held by David Avanesyan and BBC Sport’s Mike Costello said a bout against the Russian is “one of the most exciting that can be made in a British ring”.

“Amir Khan is a big jump, but that’s a huge fight,” said Hearn. “I would still like to see Conor win a European title but after a performance like that how can you not get excited and look at the big names.

“It’s not a story of him being a legend’s son anymore. It’s becoming that people will go up to Nigel Benn and say ‘you’re Conor’s dad’.

“He outworks everyone in the gym, it’s hard to not get really, really excited. He will be a superstar.”

‘Benn enters chasing pack’

Conor Benn
Benn now has 18 wins from 18 contests

BBC Sport boxing correspondent Mike Costello: What an impressive win. That’s a performance that will send a message around the global welterweight division even if it doesn’t frighten the top end. There’s some nostalgia as that’s the kind of performance and finish his dad delivered when he was winning world titles.

BBC Radio 5 Live boxing analyst Steve Bunce: At welterweight we are blessed with two men – Errol Spence Jr and Terence Crawford and they can compete with anyone in any era. I think Benn just gate crashed the chasing pack. That sends a bit of a warning. That confuses things a little in the welterweight scene.

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