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Khan and Brook have chance of redemption after falling short in careers but will both fighters survive with dignity?

, Khan and Brook have chance of redemption after falling short in careers but will both fighters survive with dignity?

AMIR KHAN and Kell Brook have a big-money chance to sign off in style but if any sport has self-sabotage mastered it is boxing.

Khan, 34, is a Team GB Bolton hero who claimed silver at the 2004 Olympics as a sensational 17-year-old and went on to win world titles at light-welter.

Amir Khan and Kell Brook will go toe to toe in the ring on February

Brook, 35, is the boy-next-door from Sheffield whose brilliant ability means he should have achieved more than his four-fight IBF welterweight world title reign.

Both veterans should have their legacies in tact and are free to land one final payday for this retirement cash-out clash in February when they settle their decade-long grudge.

But when the pressure of pay-per-view sales starts mounting and all the bad blood is revisited, can the two veterans hold on to their dignity?

Khan has been bizarrely guilty of telling married father-of-two Brook to come out of the closest and confirm he is gay.

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Brook – always the less attention seeking of the two – has nicknamed his nemesis Amir Khan-dashian after the fame-begging American celebrity.

So there are fears this could descend into something quite dismal.


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Both men were capable of in-ring brilliance, Brook’s 2014 world title win over American Shawn Porter is one of the most underrated away wins for a Brit abroad, but also have form for letting themselves down away from it.

David Haye should be remembered as an all-time great but the grubby way he tried to grab every last pound by promoting his final two Tony Bellew bouts tarnished his memory.

Inspiration should be taken from a UK icon like Ricky Hatton who was able to use his final ever fight as an emotional and cathartic experience where he bowed out with honour and adulation, even in defeat.

Brook has lost three of his last six bouts and needed facial surgery on the cheek fractures Gennady Golovkin and Errol Spence inflicted on him.

Khan – who proved his bravery dozens of times – cut a tragic figure quitting his 2019 bout with Terence Crawford after a dubious low-blow.

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When this bout finally arrives – and don’t rule out an injury or argument kyboshing it before the first bell – it will offer up a sub-standard showing compared to their brilliant primes.

But it offers both men a shot at redemption and peace-of-mind in their long retirements after both arguably fell short of their huge early potential.

The best we can hope for is two middle-aged millionaires go about their media duties in a decent fashion and, when they finally battle, give their fans one last great memory of them.

The worst we can expect is a couple of faded forces hurling grubby innuendos in the build-up and then not much more inside the ring.

Khan and Brook both deserve to join the pantheon of British boxing greats who endeared themselves to the public for more than their records, ferocious yet flawed, heroic but humble.

Frank Bruno, Hatton, Herol Graham, Luke Campbell, some world champions and some not but all loved by the British boxing crowd for giving it their all.

Khan and Brook presumably have more money than them all but now they have a chance to salvage and secure their reputations.

Both men achieved so much more than any of their biggest fans or critics but there is a niggling belief both could and should have done more – had greed or lack-of-dedication not gotten in the way.

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With their world titles in the record books and family fortunes secured for a generation or two, this bout is their last chance to remind us of their undoubted brilliance.

Hopefully they grab the glory with both gloved hands and let the final chance to trash-talk their way to a few more PPV pounds slip through their fingers.

, Khan and Brook have chance of redemption after falling short in careers but will both fighters survive with dignity?

Khan burst on to the scene by winning Olympic silver at Athens 2004

, Khan and Brook have chance of redemption after falling short in careers but will both fighters survive with dignity?

Brook was battered by Gennady Golovkin in 2016, the first of three defeats in six fights

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