Boxing News At Five | Sep 18 2019

Boxing News at Five: Khan vs. Brook gets “one more roll of the dice”, Whyte could return on December 7 in Saudi Arabia

Amir Khan vs. Kell Brook is the one fight that won't go away, while Eddie Hearn says Dillian Whyte could return to the ring in Saudi Arabia on December 7
Amir Khan
Amir-Khan  |  Action Images/Andrew Couldridge

HANDS up if you’re sick and tired of hearing about a potential fight between Brits Kell Brook and Amir Khan.

Well, tough.

For as long as both remain British and active, a lucrative – though admittedly not as lucrative as it once was – fight between the pair will inevitably be rumoured, teased and dangled before the former world champions like a sausage at the end of a dog’s nose.

In fact, chances are the last man to give up on it will be Eddie Hearn, its potential promoter, who remains keen to make it happen and is fully aware the Khan and Brook brands will ensure it’s a pay-per-view main event right up until one of the two hangs up the gloves.

“I still want to make that fight and I’ll give it one more roll of the dice,” Hearn said. “I will tell them: ‘Guys, spring 2020, let’s do it.’

In recent times Khan has almost reinvented himself in the Middle East, blasting away Billy Dib in Saudi Arabia in July, while Brook has gone missing since outpointing Michael Zerafa in December. Neither of the two are operating anywhere near their best, which could, ironically, increase the chances of them getting together and making some money before their time is up.

“He (Brook) wants to fight in December,” Hearn said. “He wants the big fights. He has been there and done it. He wants to have those big fights and he feels like he’s got a few left.

“He tried to make the Terence Crawford fight. One hundred and forty-seven pounds is still difficult for him, but he can do it with the right amount of time and preparation.

“He still has the hunger and still wants to knock out a certain Mr Khan.

“We’ll see if we can get it over the line.”

Unfortunately, the feeling here is that Khan and Brook aren’t even anywhere near the home straight.

Kell Brook
Brook is a former IBF welterweight champion (Action Images/Craig Brough)

When Dillian Whyte returns to the ring his head will be clear and so too will the ongoing case with UK Anti-Doping (UKAD).

Or at least that’s what Eddie Hearn, his promoter, hopes will happen.

If it does, and if there is some sort of resolution with UKAD, there is every chance ‘The Body Snatcher’ could see action on the Andy Ruiz Jnr vs. Anthony Joshua undercard on December 7 in Saudi Arabia.

Hearn, touching on his latest meeting with Whyte, told iFL TV: “I met him and said, ‘How are you getting on?’

“He said, ‘Our lawyers are pushing with UKAD to get a date,’ for the – whatever it’s going to be – to hopefully come out and give you all the info and clear his name.

“He’d like to (fight this year). I’d like him to.”

Asked when and where, Hearn added: “Saudi Arabia? I’d like him to fight this year but obviously, mentally, it’s a tough time for him.

“I feel like we’ve got to push for that (resolution). Because he’s allowed to fight, but I think that needs to be out of his head when he fights.”

Whyte was last in action on July 20, when he bravely recovered from a knockdown to defeat Colombian Oscar Rivas over 12 gruelling rounds. Since then, he has faced intense scrutiny for being called in for a meeting with UKAD officials prior to the bout and has, in the words of the Corleone family, gone to the mattresses.

A hearing to resolve the issue is expected in early October, which Whyte and Hearn believe will clear the WBC contender’s name. But until then it’s unlikely a Dillian Whyte fight will be scheduled anytime soon and it’s even more unlikely we’ll find ourselves any closer to the truth of the matter.  

Dillian Whyte
Whyte fights to clear his name (Action Images/Reuters/Andrew Couldridge)