ITV grabs telecast rights to ITV grabs telecast rights to Amir Khan boxing


ITV will be returning to boxing coverage when Amir Khan fights Mario Kindelan at the end of this month.

The fight, which had to be put back from April 16 after it emerged Kindelan would fight in Ireland the day before to April 30 ? will be ITV’s first foray into boxing in years.

Khan refused to confirm whether it would be his last in a vest and head-guard, insisting that he was still considering whether to box at the 2006 Commonwealth Games.

However Frank Warren, who is helping to bring Kindelan to the UK to stage a rematch of the Olympic final which the Cuban won on points, said he would like to see Khan turn professional this summer.

Whether it is with Sports Network remains to be seen, but Khan?s lawyer Asif Vali said Warren was a ?front runner? for the 18-year-old?s signature.

Following a two-hour delay while the fight was frantically rearranged because of Kindelan?s Irish date ? Warren said the discussions were ?harder than dealing with Don King? ? Khan said he was confident of avenging the Olympic final defeat.

His bid for revenge is likely to be witnessed by a full house of around 850 at an event that will raise money for the Bury Amateur Boxing Club where Khan learnt his trade and the NSPCC.

It will be the third time he has fought Kindelan, and he agreed that if he won, it would confirm his status as one of the best amateurs in the world.

?It could be it,? said Khan when asked whether it would be his last fight. ?I might just have another fight in England, may be against the ABA champion or the winner of the four nations, and then of course I would like to turn professional.?

With a smile on his face Vali said he could ?categorically state? the April 30 date ?might be? Khan?s last as an amateur.

?We have not decided when his last fight will be,? said Vali. ?It will be his last fight for Bury ABA but on an international level there is one coming up in July and that appeals.

?In terms of Amir turning professional, the negotiations are at an advanced stage (about Khan turning professional) it?s fair to say Frank Warren is a front runner,? added Vali.

Meanwhile Warren admitted that he would have preferred Khan not to have taken the fight, and said he wanted to see him turn professional as soon as possible.

ITV discontinued showing professional boxing in 1994/95 when Frank Warren signed to BSkyB. Since then majority of the fights have been screened on Sky’s sports and pay per view channels.

The match between Amir Khan and Mario Kindelan will be shown on ITV on 30th March.

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