The former two-time world champion is set for a huge payday to fight in Saudi Arabia and it’s not hard to believe that several fighters will follow in his footsteps
Following a crushing defeat to Terence Crawford earlier this year, many experts and fans alike predicted that Amir Khan would head into retirement.
And there would have been no shame in that. A two-time world champion and an Olympic silver medallist would have been able to hold his head very high.
At the very most, it was thought Khan might finally have his showdown with Kell Brook that has been teased for almost a decade.
Now, Khan will fight for a reported $ 7 million – something he has no problem admitting stopped him from retiring – when he faces Australian Billy Dib in Saudi Arabia on Friday.
Dib is no filler opponent, either. Although he is making the step up in weight, he is a former two-weight world champion at featherweight and super-featherweight.
But this isn’t just a fight for Khan. This is part of a wider initiative and business plan from the 32-year-old, but he also hopes to make Saudi Arabia a hotbed for huge fights like many of the top destinations in the world today.
“It’s a very exciting time for boxing in the Middle East and myself and my partner Bill Dosanjh are pioneering the move with our Super Boxing League in the region,” Said Khan.
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“My fight with Dib is breaking new ground here and I want to put on a real show for the public that have not seen big championship boxing before or have only seen it on TV. I’m sure once they see it and feel the excitement, it will give them a big appetite for it so they can’t wait to see the next show,”
“This is just the start of our plans, we intend to make Saudi Arabia a big-fight capital just like Las Vegas, New York and London and in time I believe that it will be just as big as those cities.”
“Through our Super Boxing League teams the Jeddah Sharks and Tigers we aim to discover and develop the first stars of Saudi boxing and help to create exciting talent in this largely untapped area of potential,”
“Also, we have just opened the Super Boxing Gym in partnership with Fitness Time to bring boxing training initially to eight properties in Saudi Arabia and can expand to 140 properties throughout the KSA that will give incredible access for people to train in boxing.”
“The dream would be to help discover the first Saudi boxing World Champion or help to take the first Saudi boxer to Olympic Gold, that is our aim and this is just the beginning.”
Don’t miss Amir Khan V Billy Dib, and Hughie Fury V Samuel Peter this Friday night from 9pm on talkSPORT. PLUS you can also catch all the action on free-to-air Channel 5.