Matchbook’s resident Boxing tipster Ryan Cahill breaks down his best bet for Saturday night’s highly anticipated duel in Manchester.
A feud that has simmered for well over a decade finally comes to boiling point on Saturday night when Kell Brook (39-3, 27KO’s) and Amir Khan (34-5, 21KO’S) meet in Manchester.
In truth, this fight is arriving more than half a decade later than anticipated, but what awaits this weekend presents both a long-standing feud with genuine dislike.
The winner will be set to have one last run at regaining world honours while the loser is almost certainly staring directly in the face of retirement.
Brook, the former IBF Welterweight Champion, will make the walk to the ring on Saturday night the (1.77) favourite in what is a closely contested betting heat.
Amir Khan, a former unified Light Welterweight Champion, can be had at (2.4) to cause what would be considered a minimal upset.
What interests me from a betting angle is the fight to go over 9.5 rounds.
Of course, this can be viewed as a contrarian opinion.
The general consensus by most is that both fighters are incredibly vulnerable and have regressed considerably in the years since they once ruled their respective divisions. There is, of course, some truth to this; a quick glance at Brook’s record shows 3 KO defeats in 3 losses, while Khan shows 4 KO’s in his five losses.
Fools gold would indicate this fight could not possibly hear the final bell
A closer look would suggest both have lost to some of the best the sport has to offer, for Brook defeats to Gennadiy Golovkin (up not one but two weight classes), Errol Spence Jnr, and most recently, Terrence Crawford reads like a list of some of the sport’s most feared punchers.
Khan himself has experienced a stoppage defeat at the fearsome hands of Terrence “Bud” Crawford, also losing to many judges P4P number 1 in Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, Danny Garcia and much earlier in his career in a shocking upset at the hands of Columbian Breidis Prescott. Prescott aside, Brook and Khan’s respective defeats read like a list of fighters that are surefire Hall of Famers.
At this stage in both Khan and Brook’s respective careers, there are many rungs down from the fighters previously mentioned.
Offensively both show a decent KO percentage, “Special K” boasts 27 stoppages in 39 wins, an impressive 69% KO rate. “King Khan” the less renowned puncher of the two has a KO rate of 62%, halting 21 of 34 wins before the scheduled distance.
A deeper dive into the records of both once more show that their power does not translate up in class; it has been many years since either has produced a credible KO win of note.
Stylistically, it is a fascinating clash
Khan is the slicker technician of the two and has relied on his blistering hand speed and punch combinations throughout his pro career.
Brook, who I would describe as a solid all-rounder, is also technically adept and was able to effectively utilise his physical strength and counter-punching ability at his peak.
Potentially, we may see some tentative early rounds here.
Not only will both be well aware of the other’s strengths, but I feel there will be an innate recognition of what a devastating loss will have on the legacy in which they leave the sport.
The victor will get the bragging rights of a long-standing feud and provide the prevailing boxer with a defining fight in their storied career.
Based on what I have outlined above, I am more than happy to go against the grain and take my chances with this one seeing out the over 9.5 round total which can be had at 1.88 at Matchbook, this also gives us a cushion for a finish to occur from the midway point in the 10th onwards.
- Over 9.5 rounds (1.88)