Younger Khan hopes to make his mark for Pakistan
NEW DELHI (AP)
Haroon Khan is relying on some motivational advice from his WBA world champion brother Amir as he bids to make his mark for Pakistan after being rejected by England selectors for the Commonwealth Games.
The 19-year-old Haroon made his competitive debut for Pakistan with an impressive 12-1 third-round stoppage win over Sunday Elias of Tanzania at the New Delhi Games here Tuesday in a 52-kilogram category bout.
Haroon said he was good enough to qualify for the English team, and the Commonwealth Games ''is a big opportunity for me to prove the critics wrong in England.''
''I spoke to my brother on the way here and he told me to ignore the negative publicity and just concentrate on your opponent and bring the result back. And that's what I did,'' Haroon told Britain's Press Association.
Multiple international medalist Khalid Yafai earned England selection at the expense of Haroon Khan, who says he's now looking forward.
''My job is to perform in the ring and I didn't let it get to me. I'm not going to bother about the bad publicity I've had,'' he said.
He started strongly against Elias but knows that tougher bouts are ahead, with the likes of European bronze medallist Andrew Selby of Wales as a potential opponent in the third round.
''They'll be tough and I'm sure they'll want to beat me as much as I want to beat them,'' he said. ''I'm going to get back into training now. My preparations have been brilliant and I'm sure I'm going to get much better.''
The Khan brothers were born in England and call Bolton, near Manchester, their home town. Amir Khan became the WBA light welterweight world champion at the age of 22. He won a silver medal at the 2004 Athens Olympics, where he was the only British boxer, before turning pro.
Haroon qualifies to represent Pakistan through his parents.