Today at 5 pm ET streaming live on DAZN’s Facebook and Twitter pages for U.S. viewers and on Sky Sports in the United Kingdom, Amir Khan returns to the ring in Birmingham, England to face Samuel Vargas in what Khan says will be his final tune-up bout before a return to big fights.
Khan (32-4, 20 KO) came off a two-year absence in April to knock out Phil Lo Greco in 39 seconds, and Vargas (29-3-2, 14 KO) pretty much has to be a tougher test. Khan is the heavy favorite to win, and if he does, he’s talked about stadium fights with the likes of Manny Pacquiao or Kell Brook. But Khan, talented as he is, is always vulnerable, too, and that’s what makes him exciting.
On the undercard, Jason Welborn (23-6, 7 KO) defends the British middleweight title against Tommy Langford (20-2, 6 KO) in a rematch of their May bout, which Welborn won by split decision.
- Amir Khan def. Samuel Vargas by unanimous decision (119-108, 119-109, 118-110)
Amir Khan vs Samuel Vargas
Round 1: Let’s see what Vargas has for Khan. Khan with a clean right quickly. Khan showing off the speed early. As expected. Another clean right from Khan, a short shot on the inside. Khan tripling the jab. Vargas misses a left hook. Khan with a nice combination and Vargas tries to shake it off. Another counter combination from Khan. You never say never with Khan, but so far this is easy work. Khan 10-9
Round 2: Vargas tries to go to the body, gets cracked with a left hook, Khan flurrying, right hand and Vargas is down. Khan jumping on him as action resumes, Vargas trying to hang on. Khan just ripping Vargas, the hand speed is way too much for the underdog. Khan with a stiff jab, Vargas trying to throw with him at the moment. It’s something, anyway. It’s some sort of strategy. More left hands from Khan, rapid stuff. Khan has clearly decided the finish isn’t quite there for him, so he’s backing off from the aggression a bit. Vargas’ nose is bloodied. BIG SHOT AND DOWN GOES AMIR KHAN AT THE END OF THE ROUND! MY GOD! 10-10, Khan 20-19
Round 3: Vargas has some confidence now. He’s coming forward. Khan opens up, nothing lands clean. Vargas goes for another overhand right, gets caught off balance with a shot to the top of the head, and he’s down again. He’s complaining, but it’s a knockdown officially. 30 seconds left in the round, not a lot happening in the last minute or so. Khan peppering here and there. There’s a combination late. Khan 10-8, 30-27
Round 4: Khan seems like he’s fully back in control here. Khan using his speed. Vargas with a good overhand right, Khan counters back with some nice shots. Vargas with some body work. Khan with some jabs. Khan 10-9, 40-36
Round 5: Khan with a great flurry about a minute into the round, great speed being shown here, and Vargas is getting rocked around badly. He’s staying up, but just getting smoked here. Vargas holds finally. Khan dominating right now, he’s back to full aggression. Khan with a clear low blow the referee doesn’t care about or notice. A regular Earl Hebner here. Khan backing off a bit now, saving his energy. Still relatively early in the fight. Khan 10-9, 50-45
Round 6: Khan going to work again early in this round. Vargas complaining to the referee. More great speed. Vargas just has no answer for the speed. He’s in there and trying. Vargas gets Khan in the corner and Vargas, credit to him, digs away to the body as much as he can. Khan just staying there and calling Vargas on, then finally gets out of the corner. Khan keeping distance, not pressing big at the moment, but landing the odd shot. Khan with a great combination, body and head. Vargas’ face turning into a big red mess. Khan 10-9, 60-54
Round 7: Both throwing hard a minute into this round. Vargas throwing with him, getting some chances. Khan getting a little overly reckless. He can’t help himself. Khan with a body-head combo. Vargas going to the body in return. Quieter round. Khan 10-9, 70-63
Round 8: Khan has slowed down some. Had to strip naked to make weight yesterday so that might be showing up somewhat. Khan still in control, though. Vargas is trying, has always had heart, but he’s outgunned, as he was against Spence and Garcia. Good, clean right hand from Khan late in the round. He won the round anyway, but that seals it clearly. Khan 10-9, 80-72
Round 9: Khan with a good hook at the end of a combination. He’s done some decent body work, if streaky in the attack. Khan knocks Vargas back a bit. Another relatively easy round for Khan. Vargas, again, still trying, but he doesn’t have it if Khan doesn’t give it to him, and Khan is not giving it to him anymore. Khan 10-9, 90-81
Round 10: Khan starting well again this round, but Vargas pins him in the corner and does some work again. Khan, like earlier, seems to be perfectly comfortable with the situation. Khan jabbing, poking, prodding. Just controlling. Then LATE in the round, RIGHT before the bell, Vargas clips Khan and puts him on jelly legs. My God. Khan 10-9, 100-90
Round 11: If I’m Vargas I just start swinging. It’s clear he can hurt Khan, clear Khan is a little tired. Vargas is throwing shots here, not landing, bu throwing shots. Khan with a little combo. Both open up with about 40 seconds left, nobody landing much. I’ll nick this round to Vargas. He was the more aggressive and Khan was really on the bike here. Vargas 10-9, Khan 109-100
Round 12: Khan starts the round fast and he may be looking to finish. That could give Vargas the chance, though. We’ll see. Heads clash. Vargas trying to goad Khan into a war, but Amir is back to using space effectively. Khan 10-9, 119-109