Amir Khan says he has ‘all the tools’ to beat Luis Collazo

British-Pakistani boxer Amir Khan hopes a dazzling display over Luis Collazo on saturday night in Las Vegas will put him in the frame for a lucrative showdown with Floyd Mayweather Jr later this year.
Briton Amir Khan will have Floyd Mayweather Jr on his mind when he goes up against Luis Collazo on Saturday night in Las Vegas. Alex Livesey / Getty Images
Briton Amir Khan will have Floyd Mayweather Jr on his mind when he goes up against Luis Collazo on Saturday night in Las Vegas. Alex Livesey / Getty Images

Amir Khan has vowed to “earn” a bout with boxing’s pound-for-pound king Floyd Mayweather Jr by comprehensively beating Luis Collazo in Las Vegas.

The Briton of Pakistani origins appeared set for a showdown with the undefeated Mayweather on Saturday night, but the American instead chose to fight Marcos Maidana.

Rather than sulk, Khan, 27, agreed to star on the undercard and will make his welterweight debut against Collazo, a rugged southpaw from New York who has won his past four fights, which includes a shock second-round knockout victory over former welterweight champion Victor Ortiz.

In pictures: Amir Khan trains for his bout with Luis Collazo

Khan hopes a dazzling display will put him in the frame for a lucrative showdown with Mayweather later this year.

“As long as I put on a great performance I’ll earn that shot,” he said. “But, to be honest, I’m not looking past Collazo. I need to win this fight and take it from there. I need to put on a good performance and we’ll see what happens.

“It’s going to be a hard fight. It will be tough and exciting, but I think I have all the tools to beat him.

“He’s coming off a big win so I know it won’t be an easy fight. I’m looking to make a big statement.”

Many observers were surprised Khan chose to make his bow at welterweight against an experienced campaigner in Collazo, 33, having not fought in nearly a year and struggling badly last time out against Julio Diaz before earning a razor-thin points win.

Questions marks over his ability to take a punch continue to dog Khan (28-3, 19 knockouts), but he insists he has been honing his technique with trainer Virgil Hunter.

Collazo gave Khan’s compatriot Ricky Hatton all sorts of problems before losing a controversial decision eight years ago, but claims he is now at his peak as he attempts to pull off his second shock win in succession.

sports@thenational.ae

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Published: May 2, 2014 04:00 AM

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