Amir Khan, former world champion, announced last Friday his retirement from boxing, after a career that included a silver medal at the 2004 Athens Olympics when he was 17 years old.
Khan is considered one of the best British boxers of his time, leaving a record of 34-6. He was also unified super lightweight champion from 2009 to 2012 and faced big names such as Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, Danny Garcia and Terence Crawford.
In an interview with Mirror, Khan opened up about his decision to retire at the age of 35, making it clear that his priority is his family.
“Yeah, you’re always one punch away from getting hurt,” he said. “I’ve got a beautiful family, beautiful kids, I’ve got enough money in the bank so let’s sit back and relax. Why continue when anything can happen? You’re only one punch away from getting hurt, knocked out or killed. While I’ve got the chips on my side, I’m happy to walk away and call it a day. You’re always one punch away from getting hurt, that’s something I was always scared of, I wouldn’t be there for the kids. There’s no point making all this money and you don’t enjoy it.”
Khan confesses that he was physically and mentally unfit for his last bout, where he lost by TKO to Kell Brook in Manchester, England. The decision to stay in the fight, was due to the importance of the event, he could not abandon it.
“Then my knees were hurting in training camp. I was still pushing myself hard and that’s when it hit me, ‘do you know what, I don’t have it left in me’. But I couldn’t let anyone down, the fans down, it was such a fight, I can’t walk away from this fight, so I’m going to go ahead with it. But deep down in my mind, I wasn’t mentally prepared. I’d worked hard, don’t get me wrong, I’d trained hard, but I didn’t have it in me. I was already done as a fighter. That’s when it hit me.”
Amir Khan hopes to stay in the boxing industry, serving as a promoter and trainer.