Boxing


Amir Khan's Former Trainer Harrison - "Rubio Is A Cuban Amateur!"

by James Slater - Amir Khan's former trainer, Oliver Harrison, who was unexpectedly fired by Team-Khan earlier this year, has expressed his opinion on his replacement. And what Harrison has had to say about Jorge Rubio is not at all good. Very much blaming the Cuban coach for the disaster that befell the previously unbeaten 21-year-old this past Saturday night in Manchester, Harrison told The Guardian newspaper that if he'd still been with Khan the 1st round KO would not have happened..

"I can't believe how Amir fought," Harrison said. "It was absolutely the wrong way to fight somebody who can bang. I can't believe they learned him to keep his hands up and just stand in front of a fighter like that. He tries to be macho but that's not Amir. He naturally has his hands low and slips and slide like Tommy Hearns. The Amir I know would have his guard up in front of his face and slip and slide to avoid the punches. But the Cuban guy (Rubio) had him with his hands up just walking forward. Madness. Any half-decent fighter could have hit him."

Harrison, though he is bound to be feeling a touch of sour grapes after being unceremoniously fired like he was, does make some very good points. And while Rubio has been taking a lot of flack in the few days since the KO job Breidis Prescott did on his fighter, and while he may well have been over praised by a Khan who said the Cuban would make him "un-touchable," not all the blame can be put at Rubio's feet. However, Harrison has nothing good to say, not only about Rubio, but about Team-Khan in its entirety.

"Team Khan are amateurs," Harrison went on. "I was the only pro there and I was fighting an uphill battle. So when I saw him knocked out I was happy but sad. Happy because of what they have said about me but sad because I could have taken him to the top. If they had gone out and hired Floyd Mayweather [Senior] or Buddy McGirt I might have felt a little better. But I think they brought in the cheapest person.

"All I ever wanted was Amir to myself. But they wanted him to do interviews, to open clubs. Now he's even been saying, 'I like the cameras, I want the cameras,' and slagging me off like I was an old girlfriend. Now they go and get a Cuban amateur trainer."

So far, Khan has stood by Rubio and has made no move to find another replacement. Who knows, Khan may well have met the same fate on Saturday had Harrison still been with him. The ex-coach of the former Olympian certainly doesn't think so though.

Article posted on 09.09.2008



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