The British Boxing Board of Control has "prohibited" a fight between Conor Benn and Chris Eubank Jr as "it is not in the interests of boxing".
It had been announced earlier today that Benn, a rising star in UK boxing, would fight Eubank Junior this weekend despite failing a drugs test for clomifene, a substance known to increase testosterone.
However, a statement from the BBBC this afternoon read: "On the evening of 4th October 2022, the board of the British Boxing Board of Control Limited resolved that the contest between Chris Eubank Jnr and Conor Benn scheduled to take place on 8th October 2022 is prohibited as it is not in the interests of boxing.
"That was communicated to the boxers and promoters involved on the morning of 5th October 2022."
Speaking following the BBBC statement, however, Benn said he felt the fight could still go ahead, given he has passed all his tests with the UK Anti-Doping Agency, which is in charge of doping control for the bout.
Benn said: "I have not committed any violation, I have not been suspended so as far as I am concerned the fight is still going ahead.
"I have spoken to Chris personally and we both want the fight to go ahead. We have both taken medical and legal advice and we want the fight to happen for the fans.
"I have signed up to every voluntary anti-doping testing there is under the sun. Throughout my whole career I am tested and my UKAD tests have come back negative so I have never had any issues before.
"Even in the lead-up to this fight, my (UKAD) tests have come up negative so my team will find out as to why there has been an initial adverse finding in my test, but as I said as far as I am concerned the fight is going ahead. I am a clean athlete and we will get to the bottom of this."
Promoters Matchroom and Wasserman Boxing and the two fighters are understood to have known about the drug test result for a number of weeks.
Benn's promoters Matchroom Boxing earlier confirmed reports that he had tested positive for clomifene but insisted it had been "for trace amounts of a fertility drug", that no rule violation had been confirmed and that he had since passed a doping control test conducted by the UK Anti-Doping Agency. The failed test was conducted by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association.
The fight had generated significant interest in Britain as the sons of legendary figures of the sport meet at a catchweight at a sold out O2 Arena in London.
Benn, son of Nigel, was jumping up two divisions for the fight, while Eubank was moving to a career-low mark and is restricted in rehydrating before the bout under the terms of the agreement.
Matchroom had said that Benn's domestic testing has not shown any issues and that both fighters still wished to face off on Saturday.
They said: "We have been made aware that a random anti-doping test for Conor Benn conducted by the Voluntary Anti-Doping Association returned an adverse analytical finding for trace amounts of a fertility drug.
"The B sample has yet to be tested, meaning that no rule violation has been confirmed.
"Indeed, Mr Benn has not been charged with any rule violation, he is not suspended, and he remains free to fight. Mr. Benn has since passed a doping control test conducted by the UK Anti-Doping Agency, the anti-doping authority to which the British Board of Boxing Control has delegated its doping control testing for the bout.
"Mr Benn has passed all doping control tests conducted by UKAD.
"Both fighters have taken medical and legal advice, are aware of all relevant information, and wish to proceed with the bout this Saturday."
The fight was scheduled to be broadcast on pay-per-view with millions of euro expected to be generated from sales in the UK alone.
Boxing does itself no favours. There should be no grey areas. If you fail a test you're banned and in my opinion you should be banned for life— Carl Frampton MBE (@RealCFrampton) October 5, 2022
Writing on Twitter, Irish former two-weight world champion Carl Frampton suggested that any boxer that failed a drug test should be banned for life, regardless of circumstances.
"Boxing does itself no favours," he said. "There should be no grey areas. If you fail a test you're banned and in my opinion you should be banned for life.
"I've been super cautious from my amateur days of what I can and can't take," he added. "I wouldn't take a multi vitamin unless VADA approved. I refused a topical psoriasis ointment as it had steroids in it. Deterrents need to be stronger."
Current undisputed super-middleweight champion Saul 'Canelo' Alvarez was banned for six months in 2018 after failing a test for clenbuterol while WBC heavyweight champion Tyson Fury was given a two-year backdated ban in 2017 after testing positive for nandrolone in 2015. Both boxers claimed they had ingested the forbidden substances through meat.