By Jonny Stapleton
Paul McCloskey claims Amir Khan’s one sided demolition of Zab Judah further confirms ‘Dudey’ is a world level fighter.
The sight of Khan parading the WBA and IBF light welterweight titles around the ring after he stopped the American last month might not have been appealing to the Derry fighter, but the manner in which McCloskey’s former foe won the fight proved some sort of solace for the former European champion.
McCloskey, who fights Breidis Prescott in the Odyssey Arena in just over a weeks time, also lost to the Golden Boy promoted star. However , he did so via a very controversial stoppage and despite loosing all of the opening six rounds looked a lot more comfortable against the Freddie Roach trained fighter than the five time world champion did .
Indeed despite admittedly being very reserved in the opening stanza’s the Dungiven stylist managed to make a fighter, who is now on the pound for pound title trail, look amateurish on occasion.
The fact ‘King Khan’ reigned supreme in Mandalay Bay Resort against a world champion that was meant to give him trouble, but struggled for form against Derry’s awkward south paw has given McCloskey a confidence boost as he plans to trade leather the only fighter to beat Khan.
“A few people got onto me saying ‘Khan destroyed a world champion in five rounds but couldn’t lay a glove on you’. Obviously I lost the fight but it was under controversial circumstances after a clash of heads. His display gives you a bit of a confident boost and proves I am at world level. But you don’t just wake up in the morning and get that type of confidence. You have to work hard and train hard. I have ability but you have work hard too,” McCloskey told www.irish-boxing.com.
McCloskey is aware it will take more than a confidence boost to defeat the heavy handed Columbian in the WBA world title eliminator. He knows whatever the out come, the Prescott fight will draw Khan comparisons.
However, McCloskey is adamant his fight with the ‘Khan-queerer’ is about securing a world title shot not a rematch with the Golden Boy star.
“I lost a lot of respect for Khan after the way he conducted himself in the press conference after the fight, but I’ve put all of that behind me. I want to fight for a world title and to be honest I don’t care who it is against. I have the hurdle of Prescott to overcome first so you can understand why I don’t want to get ahead of myself.”