Keen to fight, but family is the mother of all battles for Khan

LONDON • Amir Khan says he expects to have "three or four" more bouts, despite increasing pressure from his mother and wife to retire after his knockout defeat by Saul "Canelo" Alvarez in their World Boxing Council middleweight title clash in Las Vegas on Saturday.

The British boxer was knocked unconscious by the Mexican.

Neither his mother, Falak, nor his wife, Faryal, watched the bout live, but both have already put pressure on him to hang up his gloves.

"They wanted me to retire a year ago," Khan said. "I've got a few good years left in me and then I'll retire, or I'll get kicked out of the house or disowned or something.

"It's very hard for my family to see me going into the ring. Mum probably hasn't seen the fight or the knockout but she knows I've been hurt. My wife is the same, she doesn't like watching the fights - it is too much for her really.

British fighter Amir Khan acknowledges that his wife and mother are increasingly keen to see him retire from boxing.

"I keep saying to them, 'A couple more fights, a couple more fights,' it has been two fights for the last three years.

"I have to be smart instead of jumping two or three weight classes for fights. Maybe I will fight people my own size because otherwise I might give my mum or my wife a heart attack.

"I still have a lot left. I don't want to finish on a loss. I still want to win more fights and be in more big fights."

His defeat was particularly brutal and he claimed that, while both boxers weighed in at 155lb on Friday, Alvarez may have had a considerable weight advantage in the ring.

Alvarez's team had refused to have a rehydration clause in the contract that would have limited his weight gain after the weigh-in. Khan admitted that he was surprised by how big and strong the Mexican had been in the ring.

"I wanted to be in a big fight," Khan said. "I knew about all the things that were going to go on. I didn't expect him to be that big or that strong, but I'm not going to blame anyone. I took the fight.

"I've been knocked out before and I have always come back stronger. I know I will come back stronger from this."

One man who Khan says he will not fight, however, is Kell Brook.

The International Boxing Federation welterweight champion, who has been chasing a bout with Khan for years, went on social media within hours of his fellow Briton's defeat in Las Vegas to call him out again.

"I don't think that's going to happen," Khan said. "I just don't think we agree with each other - basically, I don't like him and I'm not giving him the fight."


A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 11, 2016, with the headline 'Keen to fight, but family is the mother of all battles for Khan'. Subscribe