British-Pakistani Amir Khan wins WBC welterweight title against Billy Dib in Jeddah

British-Pakistani Amir Khan wins WBC welterweight title against Billy Dib in Jeddah
Amir Khan enters the ring against Terence Crawford before their WBO welterweight title fight at Madison Square Garden on April 20, 2019 in New York City. (AFP)
Updated 14 July 2019

British-Pakistani Amir Khan wins WBC welterweight title against Billy Dib in Jeddah

British-Pakistani Amir Khan wins WBC welterweight title against Billy Dib in Jeddah
  • This is Khan’s first fight after controversial defeat to Terence Crawford in April
  • Hopes to face Filipino superstar Manny Pacquiao in Saudi Arabia at the end of the year

ISLAMABAD: Former unified light-welterweight world champion, the British-Pakistani Amir Khan, won the World Boxing Council international welterweight title by knocking out Australia’s Billy Dib at the inaugural Fight Night in Jeddah late on Friday.
With the win at King Abdullah Sports City, Khan earns a top-five ranking with the WBC, which in theory could give him another shot at a world title.
“I felt very comfortable in there, I was seeing everything, I was making sure I was picking the right shots,” Khan told The National in Jeddah after his victory. “It was a quick turnaround after the Crawford fight. Whenever I fight I always make it exciting, I always make it very interesting. I want to thank all the fans in Saudi Arabia for coming to the fight and Inshallah (god willing) we’ll be back soon.”
Following the win over Dib, the Briton said he hoped to return to the Kingdom to face Filipino superstar Manny Pacquiao, boxing’s only eight-weight world champion and a former sparring partner, before the end of the year.
“Look, we want the Manny Pacquiao fight, let’s hope he comes to Saudi Arabia,” Khan said.
“Hopefully we come back again at the end of the year and bring Manny Pacquiao here.”
Khan was originally to face Indian Neeraj Goyat in Saudi Arabia, where he was reportedly being paid £7m to headline a team event between fighters representing Pakistan and India. However, Goyat was forced to pull out of the match due to injuries and Dib took his place.
This was Khan’s first fight since his controversial defeat to WBO welterweight champion Terence Crawford in New York in April which saw him accused of “quitting” after his corner pulled him out following a low blow from the American in the sixth round.
Friday’s fight, part of a series of events at Jeddah’s Season Festival, is only the second mega boxing event of it’s kind in Saudi Arabia, following last year’s fight in which British boxers Callum Smith and George Groves competed for the Muhammad Ali Trophy at the same venue in Jeddah.
Khan has been vocal about his hopes that Friday’s event would catapult boxing to the center stage in the Middle East and make him the face of the sport in the region.
“So at least I can say one day that I helped grow it [boxing] here and was one of the first guys to make history in boxing. And who knows, I could be the face of boxing in Saudi Arabia,” he told reporters last week.