Amir Khan wants to get his belt back
“I really think the whole world thinks I deserve this rematch because I know I was treated unfairly.” Not the whole world, but enough people to make a difference. Yesterday, the WBA announced that Amir Khan, the British boxer who recently lost his WBA and IBF title belts to Washington, DC based Lamont Peterson, would be granted his wish – a rematch. The loss was one that was plagued by controversy, with Khan’s camp alleging that he had been unfairly treated.
Among Khan’s complaints were that having 2 points deducted by referee Joe Cooper in the seventh and twelfth rounds without the traditional warning would have allowed him to retain a unanimous decision. Commentators such as ESPN’s Dan Rafael, have called such an action by Cooper “an almost unheard of foul call” .
Golden Boy appealed the decision to both the WBA and IBF, citing Cooper’s actions as well as a score-card discrepancy between the WBA supervisor and IBF supervisor.
Then there was the issue of the mystery man who appeared to be talking to the judges repeatedly during the fight. He was later identified as Mustafa Ameen, an IBF affiliate who had credentials and a ringside seat during the fight. He was seen repeatedly touching the score cards, which is a WBA violation, as well as chatting it up with the judges.
Our view is that regardless of the controversy, the Khan-Peterson fight was one of the best fights of 2011. Both are extremely talented pugilists and both left with their dignity intact. Some claim Khan is a whiner, but we disagree. Rules are there for a reason. They should be respected. It bodes well for Peterson to want to remove the asterisk from this win as well. Next week the IBF will decide on Khan’s appeal for a rematch. They should grant it. Boxing as a sport is notorious for its intrigue and conflicts of interest. A rematch would further help rehabilitate boxing’s rep.
As far as the WBA rematch is concerned, Khan had the following to say:
“I’m pleased that justice has been done and the WBA has ordered an immediate rematch,” Khan said. “All we ask as sportsmen is for a fair and level playing field when we compete. Lamont Peterson proved in our fight that he is a great competitor and I hope that a second bout will be just as exciting. I want to prove without doubt that I’m the best in the 140lb division by taking care of business in the rematch.”
We’re looking forward to it.
The MeccaStars Team.