Two-way gamble as fragile Khan takes on Barrera

March 12, 2009


A wonderful clash of styles between the wily, tough veteran and the speed and power of youth is on the cards when Britain’s Amir Khan faces Mexican Marco Antonio Barrera in Manchester, with the winner being thrown into Lightweight World title contention.

The young Brit, who suffered a crushing defeat inside a minute at the heavy hands of Colombian Breidis Prescott is taking a huge gamble by stepping into a ring with a future Hall of Famer in 35-year-old Barrera.

As quick as his hand speed has been in his 19 wins, Khan appears fragile in dealing with blows to the chest and jaw.

Even before the Prescott defeat, too many poor fighters have rattled Khan and despite the work trainer Freddy Roach has done on the Olympic silver medallist’s defence you can’t fix a bad chin.

Barrera is gambling too, mind you.

BRITAIN/Ranked as high as second by the WBO and fourth by the WBC he is taking an unnecessary risk in fighting somebody that the WBC do not even rate in their top 20.

Coupled with the fact that Barrera has fought for most of his career at a lower weight, he is risking a lot and that adds to the intrigue behind this fight.

Even the bookmakers are struggling to call it. There has been a lot of money placed on the Mexican, an 11/10 shot, even though Khan is the slight favourite quoted at 4/6 with Ladbrokes this week.

For me, though, the fact that two fights ago Barrera was slugging it out over 12 rounds with the current pound-for pound champion in Manny Pacquiao and Khan was on his back against Prescott after just one, makes the seven-times world champion my favourite.

Khan, as talented as he is, just hasn’t been in with a fighter of Barrera’s class and like Bernard Hopkins (against Kelly Pavlik) and Nate Campbell (against Juan Diaz) in 2008 I can see experience proving too much for youth once more.

PHOTO (UPPER): Amir Khan punches during a media workout session at his gym in Bolton, northern England, March 6, 2009. REUTERS/Phil Noble

PHOTO: Mexican Boxer Marco Antonio Barrera poses for photographers during a media session at Shannons gym in Manchester, March 11, 2009. REUTERS/Phil Noble


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Cracking blog Patrick. I agree with you. Kahn has the pace but he will always be susceptible to a knockout with his less than sturdy chin.

I like both fighters, but on this occasion this fight might be a little too early for Kahn as he so eagerly tries to prove his critics wrong by beating a big name.

Barrera by k.o.

Posted by Neil | Report as abusive

As above really – Khan will undoubtably show off his speed again, but will be caught by Barrera, and fight over.

Should be a good one regardless of result though.

Posted by Hans Moman | Report as abusive

I think you’re underestimating Khan. He will be too quick for the old man Barrera and should be able to stay out of trouble. Khan by k.o.

Posted by Jimbo | Report as abusive

Oh ye of little faith.

Posted by jimbo | Report as abusive