Amir Khan has backed Hamzah Sheeraz to beat Liam Williams in their middleweight clash at the Copper Box Arena this weekend.
Khan says the undefeated 24-year-old has the speed, power and movement to stop the former world title challenger on Saturday night.
Khan – who retired from professional boxing in 2022 – also credited Sheeraz with being a big puncher, stating he ‘hits very hard for his weight division.’
However, Khan did acknowledge the fact Williams has shared the ring with some ‘big boxing names’ – taking on Chris Eubank Jr in February 2022.
Nevertheless, Khan is excited to what the fight – which was originally scheduled for December before Sheeraz suffered a perforated eardrum in training.
Amir Khan has backed Hamzah Sheeraz (pictured above) to beat Liam Williams in their middleweight clash at the Copper Box Arena this weekend
Speaking to Queensberry and TNT Sports about who he is backing for the rearranged fight on February 10, Khan said: ‘Both fighters want to win but I am leaning more towards Hamzah in this fight.
‘That’s because I think he has the speed, he’s got the power, he’s got the movement and he hits very hard for his weight division.
‘I just don’t know if Williams will be able to take the power that he has. You know, Hamzah’s been looking really good in his last few fights. He’s been looking really promising.
‘I think he is only a few fights away from the major titles. So yeah, my prediction is Hamzah to win within maybe eight to 10 rounds. Or maybe on points.
‘But, like I said, Williams is still a really dangerous opponent. He can hit hard and also he’s been in there with the big names in boxing like Eubank Jr and other fighters.
‘But, look if Hamzah sticks to his game plan, he’ll win. He’s been looking good in training I’ve been hearing so he’ll get the win. Stay focused and lets go!’.
Meanwhile, Billy Joe Saunders believes Williams has what it takes to knock Sheeraz out during their bout on Saturday night.
He told Mail Sport: ‘I think Sheeraz has the youth on his side. I think Liam Williams has the experience. They are both great punchers, great fighters and both can box. I think it’s a pick-ems fight.
Meanwhile, Billy Joe Saunders believes Williams (above) has what it takes to knock Sheeraz out
‘I’m not going to sit on the fence. I think Liam Williams by knockout or Hamzah by points. But, I wouldn’t really outcast any result on this fight because it’s a really 50/50 fight in my eyes.
‘It’s time for Hamzah to show what he is about and whether he can step up the levels because this is a couple of levels step up. I take my hat off to him.’
Meanwhile, Sheeraz told PA: ‘It’s a must win fight for both of us. I can’t afford to slip up. The sacrifices I’ve made are more than an average fighter would make. It would be disrespectful to my team if I slip up.
‘My aspirations and plans are too big to be losing. It all comes down to how I can display my work in camp on fight night. I’ve done that for 18 fights and hopefully 19 will be on the way.
‘This can give me endless opportunities. I can fight for a world title, I can fight for a British title, face the likes of Chris Eubank Jr. Once you get through a fight like this in flying colours then the doors are open.’
Sheeraz is hoping a victory over Williams on February 10 will open the door to a potential Saudi Arabian bout in 2014, insisting it’s the best time to be a boxer financially.
He said: ‘I want a good performance on February 10 and then I want a fight out in Saudi and to become well known out there. It’s probably the best time to be involved in boxing. Especially with the money in it, the promoters working together, the platform, it’s all at its peak.’
Williams says the pressure is on Sheeraz heading into the fight as he’s been ‘there before’
Meanwhile, Williams said: ‘It’s an exciting fight, I’m really looking forward to it. It’s been a long time coming, being back in one of these big fights which everyone is excited and really interested to see.
‘I believe I should have been back here sooner but these things happen. It’s not always straight forward, I’m just really happy and glad to be back on the big stage.’
‘The pressure is on him, I’ve been there before, I’ve been in big fights before. People can say what they want, I know what I’ve got left in the tank.
‘I’ve had a couple of ups and downs but it’s all part of the process. I think I’m going to stop the guy, 100 percent. I fully plan to make a statement and take him out. I’m not taking any prisoners.’