Triumphant King Khan claims first title
Bradford’s Tasif Khan secured his first title, defeating Georgia’s Mikheil Soloninkini by a unanimous points decision at the iconic York Hall in London, to claim the International Masters Bantamweight belt.
Khan, who only returned to the ring in January after a two-year sabbatical, boxed superbly throughout, using his solid jab to keep his more experienced opponent at bay.
Khan was comfortably bossing the fight, before stepping off the pace in the sixth round. Soloninkini took full advantage with an excellent big right sending Khan to the canvas. Soloninkini went all out for victory with a flurry of punches, but Khan reacted, remaining calm, and disrupting the flow by grabbing hold, giving him time to clear his head.
Despite Soloninkini’s best attempts, Khan stepped up a gear as the big shot’s reigned in from the Georgian, boxing his way through the last three rounds to secure the belt.
He said: “It’s been a dream since I was a kid to win a title, and I hope this is a stepping stone to many more. I’ve had a tough two and a half years and am proud of this achievement.
“I’d like to thank the fans who trekked all the way down to London. They always come out in numbers and they are my footballing equivalent of the 12th man. I’d like to dedicate the win to my eldest brother Tahir, who pointed me in this direction all those years ago to keep me on the straight and narrow.
“I’d like to say a big thank you to my sponsors, Kingsland Business Recovery in Bradford, Broadway Solicitors in Oldham, Kesser Jewelers in Bradford and Vyomax Supplements from Manchester. They’ve been brilliant getting behind me so I can concentrate on my boxing. The two years away from the ring were so hard. Without their support I wouldn’t have been able to continue.”
Tasif hopes to reward his fans with a local fight in Bradford that should take place in late September.