Amir Khan says top US prospect Victor Ortiz’s shock defeat last weekend has underlined how hard his fight with Andreas Kotelnik will be. Ortiz was bombed out in six rounds in an interim WBA World Light-Welterweight title fight by heavy-handed Argentine Marcos Maidana in LA. Earlier this year, Kotelnik defeated Maidana on a split decision in Germany. “Maidana’s win at the weekend shows you just how good Kotelnik is,” said 22-year-old Khan, who takes on Kotelnik on July 18 at the M.E.N Arena, Manchester, in a challenge for his WBA light-welterweight title.
“Everyone was talking about Ortiz as the next big thing in boxing, but Maidana just walked him down. He punches hard as well, so I know that I’m going to have to do something special to KO Kotelnik – and I will. I saw the fight and it was an impressive victory, and shows just how good I need to be if I am to become a world champion. Some fighters would get worried about it, but it’s just inspired me. I was working twice as hard with Freddie in the gym the next day.”
Khan is refusing to look beyond his clash with the Ukrainian and is focused on the fight.
“It would be really stupid to start thinking about other fights,” said Khan. “I am fully focussed on beating Kotelnik, and haven’t even looked at any potential future opponents. Everything has been geared to winning on July 18 and I am confident that’s what is going to happen.”
Khan is the favourite at 8/15, Kotelnik at 6/4 and the draw is 25/1.