Amir Khan (Photo by Justin Setterfield/Getty Images)
BRITISH Pakistani boxer Amir Khan has defended pocketing £7 million for his fight in Saudi Arabia against Billy Dib.
Khan will fight two-time World Champion Din on Friday in Jeddah, and he said the mega-money offer from Saudi Arabia stopped him from retiring.
Khan said: “If I didn’t have this new avenue opening up in Saudi Arabia, I am not sure what I would have done.
“While I feel so strong and excited with the sport, I would be stupid to walk away and leave millions behind on the table.
“We are prize fighters but there is only so much money you need to be comfortable.
“I will have no problem when someone else comes along and takes the opportunity to make this sort of money but when this is my last few fights, why shouldn’t it be me?”
Khan’s original opponent was Neeraj Goyat, and it would have been the first ever Pakistan-India showdown in a boxing ring. But Goyat was involved in a car accident, and when it became clear that he wouldn’t recover in time, promoter Bill Dosanjh secured Dibb as Khan’s opponent.
Meanwhile, Dib is confident of winning the bout against Khan.
“The only way I win is to lay him out. I’m gonna ice him,” said the Australian.
“Look, Amir definitely WAS a great champion, a proven warrior who’s made his mark on the game.
“He could be a future Hall of Famer. In time, I hope the boxing world will fully appreciate his skillset.
“But in the past few years there’s been a major decline, a lot of chinks have emerged.
“He’s no longer the fighter who schooled the likes of Devon Alexander and Marcos Maidana.
“Today, he’s fighting for different reasons…. money!”