Sport

I’ll beat Garcia, then I’ll beat Mayweather: Bolton boxer Amir Khan eyes global domination ahead of Las Vegas bout

By Dean Wilkins

Bolton boxing hero Amir Khan is determined to be the world’s best light-welterweight fighter – and aims to face Floyd Mayweather Jr next.

The 25-year-old goes into the ring against WBC holder Danny Garcia in Las Vegas tonight, after being awarded his WBA title.

And once Khan defeats the unbeaten American, he expects to move up to welterweight and take on the highest-earning sportsman on the planet – ‘Money’ Mayweather.

“This is my chance to prove once and for all that I’m the best in the division,” Khan said.

“I can win the WBC title tomorrow and will have held three of the four belts in the light-welterweight division, so it’s time to move up to 147lbs.

“I just think there are more challenges out there for me in that division.

“I want to be in big world title fights and in big fights with the likes of Mayweather. To do that, I need to be up in that division.”

He added: “Watching Mayweather’s last fight, coupled with the way I’ve been training, I think I’m ready.

“Styles make fights. I know Mayweather’s fought other styles and has looked so good against them, but he’s never fought anyone with my style, someone young, hungry, fit and strong who can punch.

“I know I will cause Mayweather problems. He’s getting older and slower now. It’s the best time to catch him.

“I really believe I do have the style to beat him.

“One of the reasons I want to move up to 147lbs is to fight Mayweather and it’s not about the money, it’s about me knowing I can beat the guy and be the next guy at the top, the next pound-for-pound champion.”

The 35-year-old self-declared ‘Pretty Boy’ is currently serving a 90-day prison sentence for domestic abuse and Khan said he will be waiting when he gets out.

“I hope he comes out of prison unscathed and he’s in shape because I really believe I have his number,” he said.

Khan’s record stands at 26 wins (18 by knockout) and two losses, and is fighting Garcia after his bout with Lamont Peterson was cancelled due to the Washington fighter’s failed drug test.

But he will be fighting the undefeated Garcia who has won 23 fights, 14 by knockout.

Garcia slammed Khan’s defensive ability in the ring ahead of the clash, and said his weaknesses are obvious.

“He gets hurt in nearly every fight,” he said. “Then he runs after he gets hurt. That’s not defence. When he gets hurt on Saturday night, that’s what he’ll do again.

“He can run but he can’t hide.”

“It’s great that this is a unification fight, it just keeps getting better and better for me,” he added.

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