By John F. McKenna (McJack)
Former WBA/IBF champion Amir Khan (26-2, 18 KO’s) who lost his title belts to new champion Lamont Peterson (30-1-1, 15 KO’s) feels that justice has been done since he heard that the World Boxing Association (WBA) has granted him an immediate rematch with Peterson.
Khan lost a highly controversial decision in Peterson’s home town of Washington, D.C. on December 10. Wales Online.CO.UK quoted Khan today saying:
“I’m pleased that justice has been done and the WBA has ordered an immediate rematch. All we ask as sportsmen is 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 am the best in the 140 pound division by taking care of business in the rematch.”
The Khan – Peterson fight was marked by numerous controversy, including Referee Joe Cooper taking the unusual step of deducting two points from Khan for pushing off on Peterson who repeatedly came in with his head down. Even long time boxing fans acknowledged that they had never seen points deducted from a fighter for shoving off.
Adding to the controversy was the disappearance of the master scorecard which reappeared two days later. Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer said that the missing scorecard may have been tampered with while it went missing.
Another controversy was the appearance on video of a “Mystery Man” at ringside during the fight. The “Mystery Man” was seated next to WBA judging supervisor Michael Welsh and appeared to be interfering with Welsh. It has since been determined that the “Mystery Man” is Mustafa Ameen. It was initially claimed that Ameen was an International Boxing Federation (IBF) official but the IBF has since said that he is not on their payroll and in fact was not authorized to be at ringside. Ameen was seen on the video celebrating in Peterson’s corner after the fight.
Peterson had said immediately after the fight when interviewed at ringside that he would grant Khan a rematch, but since that time the Peterson camp has backed away from that position. Peterson is also one of the names being floated around as a possible opponent for WBO welterweight champion Manny Pacquiao (54-3-2, 38 KO’s) in late May or June.