Khan and Brook cast long shadows from their last sunset

Ageing is natural. It happens to all of us. I just always want to look like myself, even if that’s an older version of myself.

Halle Berry, Actor (1966- )

In the summer of 2004 a boxer called Amir Khan, aged just 17, the possessor of unfathomable hand speed and armed with a quiver of jabs, a favourite grandson’s smile and a vest beneath which beat a fearless heart, became a household name in Britain when his voyage to an unlikely Silver medal at the Athens Olympics was broadcast live on terrestrial television. Fight fans, sports fans, grandmas, uncles, friends, all bore witness to Britain’s sole entrant.

On Saturday night, much closer to home than the Greek capital and now a retired veteran of 35, Khan climbed the steps to the ring for the final time. The loneliness of his entrance in to the public’s consciousness as a boy all those years ago reflected back in a brutal departure from the prize ring. Referee Victor Loughlin showing sufficient mercy to save a wilting Khan from a pitiless and increasingly rampant Kell Brook in the sixth round.

A fight 17 years in the making was over in 17 minutes.

Continue reading “Khan and Brook cast long shadows from their last sunset”

Crawford brooks no sentiment; destroys Kell in 4

You can learn too soon that the most useful thing about a principle is that it can always be sacrificed to expediency

Williams Maugham, The Circle (1921)

Terence Crawford didn’t prove he is the best Welterweight in the world by adding Kell Brook’s scalp to his record. True, the ruthlessness of his victory emboldened his claim but to capture the throne in the classic division he needs to meet, and beat, Errol Spence. And while Errol Spence needs Terence Crawford too, the need in play is merely the increasingly prosaic premise of proving to be the greatest of their era.

It requires both parties to care enough about this type of ‘old testament’ sentimentality for the fight to be made. The question is, do they?

Continue reading “Crawford brooks no sentiment; destroys Kell in 4”

Kell Brook and his glorious quest

That one man scorned and covered with scars
Still strove with his last ounce of courage.
To fight the unbeatable foe.
To reach the unreachable star.

The Impossible Dream, Andy Williams

There is a thread that ran through the careers of those that soared highest from the Winconbank Gym in Sheffield within which Kell Brook learned his trade. A course, irritating interloper in an otherwise beautiful, if unconventional, fabric. Woven in to Naseem’s robe of almost greatness, the elusive silk of Herol nearly man cape and the off-beat otherness of Junior, that thread, of the ‘if only’, cannot be unpicked. Continue reading “Kell Brook and his glorious quest”

To Kell and back, Brook stops Rabchenko in 2.

Having written much on the possibility Kell Brook would discover he had too little soul left in his old dancing shoes on his return this weekend, I was delighted to see him look both powerful and dynamic in stopping the competent Sergei Rabchenko in the second round of their Super-Welterweight clash in Sheffield tonight.

In doing so the 31-year-old won the WBC’s Silver title at the weight, a festoon for which no plausible explanation for either it’s existence or significance has ever been committed to ink.

Continue reading “To Kell and back, Brook stops Rabchenko in 2.”

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