Last Friday Amir Khan made his return to British boxing beating Mexican Julio Diaz by unanimous vote from the judges.
Khan was on the back foot for most of the bout, being floored in the fourth after an exception hit from Diaz. Amir claims this was one of his toughest matches, but Diaz showed no quarter, so none was given.
However tough Diaz may have been, it still seemed to be just a one punch show from him while Khan had the speed and the class and used it ruthlessly against him. The judges score cards told the story of just how close this encounter was, averaging out to 114.5-112.5 in favour of Khan. This brings Khan up to 28 wins from 31 encounters with Diaz at 40 from 48.
Even with this win in his home country, Khan still cannot win over his doubters in England. His self proclaimed title of “King Khan” makes him seem arrogant to some of his nay-sayers. His reputation in Britain has fallen far, in 2004 he won a silver medal in Athens and was hailed as a hero in his home country. His potential was said to be limitless and he went on to win a world title in the next year.
But the run up to the next Olympics was nothing like as glorious for Khan, knocked out in less than a minute by Breidis Prescott. He lost fans that night and continued to alienate himself after his defeat to Barrera in 2009. The hatred is now so bad that Khan no longer chooses to fight in Britain unless he has to and currently plans to take a short six month sabbatical as he gets married followed by a period of abstinence from fight during Ramadan.
However he will return in December to fight for the world titles he once held. In the past year he has once again proven himself to be Britain’s premier boxer and with the embarrassment of David Haye hopefully far behind us we need a new boxing idol.
Haye has officially retired from boxing and since his fight with Chisora in Munich he has been banned by the British licensing board but is still fighting under more dubious licenses. The Briton hopes to take on heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko but the path to get to him will not be easy.
British Boxing has taken more than its fair share of hits recently. What used to be viewed as the ultimate gentleman’s activity, sport in its purest form, has now been tarnished by the poor form of its players.
However, light does shine from the most unusual places with Leeds born 2012 heroine Nicola Adams taking gold in the Olympics last year. She proves to us all the style that boxing can have and the humility that a world class fight can possess.