Khan’s betting odds fair against hand-picked opponent

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Amir Khan is 1/16 in the boxing betting to make a successful fourth defence of his WBA light welterweight title against Paul McCloskey and this looks a fair price given the calibre of his opponent.

The Northern Irishman may well be unbeaten in 22 bouts and the current European champion in the weight division, but it is hard not to believe that he has been hand-picked for Khan.

McCloskey’s southpaw style may give Khan some early troubles that he will need to get used to, but it is unlikely that he has the armoury to really trouble the 24-year-old.

Khan came through a mammoth war with Marcus Maidana in his latest fight and McCloskey does not possess the same punching power as the Argentinean.

The logical next step for Khan is title unification fight with Timothy Bradley and there were plenty of possible challenges for the Bolton boxer to prepare him for such a contest.

These included a rematch with Breidis Prescott or a showdown with another heavy puncher in Lamont Peterson, but it seems the Khan camp picked the easier option in an attempt to make more of a statement to impress Bradley.

Khan himself told the BBC: “I want to prove to everyone how good Amir Khan is. Not only in England, but all over the world. So I want to beat McCloskey in better fashion than Bradley beat Devon Alexander in January.

“I’ll be treating him like another Maidana, as if he’s just as dangerous, so that I don’t make any mistakes. He’s a European champion, but he’s not ready for this level, it’s too big a step.”

McCloskey is 7/1 to shock Khan and maintain his unbeaten record, with the unlikely draw priced at 40/1.

A £20 stake on Khan beating McCloskey in the first round would return £320. New customers can sign up here to take advantage of free bets totalling up to £60.

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Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.