Boxing: Khan to face first serious test against Komjathi

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The Independent Online

The unique ring education of Amir Khan will continue tonight in front of 5,000 fans at the King's Hall in Belfast.

Khan has been elevated to the unofficial main event after the withdrawal of Scott Harrison, whose career is in doubt after seeking help at the Priory Clinic for alcohol and depression.

Tonight's fight will be Khan's seventh as a professional and at the tender age of 19 he will finally have a very serious test in front of him when he meets Hungary's Laszlo Komjathi over eight rounds. Khan has won his previous fights with ease but he will need to be at his best to beat the import.

Komjathi has lost 10 of his 25 fights but has spent four or so years competing in the very highest of European company. Two years ago he lost on points over 12 rounds in a fight for the European lightweight title against Italy's Stefano Zoff.

People who saw Khan fight at the highest levels during his amateur career are aware of how much more there is to come. Fights against men like Komjathi are perfect for the next stage of his career as he moves from meeting and beating the nation's best losers to some far more competitive fights against solid and experienced European boxers.

In the nominal main event, the local fighter Eamonn Magee defends his World Boxing Union welterweight title against the entertaining Takaloo, who was born in Iran but is based in Margate.

Magee is the man who first dropped Ricky Hatton a couple of years ago and left Manchester that night, after a close points defeat, knowing he had no chance of a rematch. Takaloo is a powerful puncher but he is extremely vulnerable when caught cold and flush.

Even with the absence of Harrison, the knowledgeable crowd will no doubt enjoy the night and as an added attraction Chris Eubank, an eternal favourite with the fans, will try to better the 12-minute standing ovation he received the last time he was introduced at the Belfast venue.