British star Amir Khan has once again reiterated his desire to fight former training partner Manny Pacquiao at the back end of 2019.
The Bolton man, who worked out alongside Pacquiao under Freddie Roach, is keen to battle his old friend if both win respective summer bouts.
Khan is hungry to get back in the ring following his controversial sixth-round stoppage loss to WBO welterweight boss and pound-for-pound contender Terence Crawford in April
He knows that a victory in Jeddah could lead to a blockbuster showdown with the legendary eight-division World Champion.
Firstly, Khan must defeat Neeraj Goyat on July 12 before Pacquiao takes on Keith Thurman later that same month.
‘King Khan’ is promising to leave the Haryana native in a proper state before advancing to what could be an All-Asian career finale against his ex-gym mate.
“End of this year, early next year, I want to make a big name world title challenge and there’s a strong possibility it could be here in Saudi Arabia against Pacquiao,’ claims Khan who will be coached for the first time by ex-WBA super-bantam boss Clarence ‘Bones’ Adams and Alex Ariza.
“Hopefully, Manny beats up Keith Thurman the week after my fight. Then we’ll see what happens.
“A fight between us would set-up boxing in the Middle East forever. It could lead to multiple championship fights taking place in the region. I intend being at the forefront.”
Further world-class action on the mega show sees featherweight firebrands Dave Penalosa and Lerato Dlamini exchange leather for the Vacant WBC Silver Championship.
Exciting Penalosa, a Pacquiao clone from Cebu City in the Philippines, is a 5ft 6in southpaw who is unbeaten in 15 fights since debuting in October 2011, aged 20.
Ranked 11th by the IBF and 12th by the WBO, he boasts serious firepower. Eleven wins have come early. With all inside five rounds, eight by full count out. He’s yet to venture past round eight.
South African Dlamini, known as ‘Light’s Out’, is also highly ranked by two of the sanctioning organizations (WBC and IBF).
Since dropping a four-round decision on his July 2015 pro debut, the Gauteng warrior has won 12 straight with six failing to finish.
However, his last four have gone the full course (including two 10 rounders and a 12 rounder). Dlamini might have the edge if it goes late but that’s a big ‘if’ where these massive punchers are concerned.