Khan cleared to fight Malignaggi

Amir Khan has been cleared to fight Paulie Malignaggi in New York on 15 May after being granted a visa.

The WBA light-welterweight champion has been waiting in Canada pending clearance to enter the United States.

Bolton boxer Khan has been mainly based in America since joining up with Los Angeles trainer Freddie Roach in 2008.

But preparations for his debut American fight, which will be shown on ITV1, were reportedly hindered by his past driving convictions in Britain.

A statement from his American handlers Golden Boy Promotions said he will head to New York on Sunday after the issue was resolved.

"Amir Khan has received his P1 visa and will be heading to New York City," said the statement.

Khan, who has won 21 of his 22 professional fights, will face local hero Malignaggi at the Theater in Madison Square Garden.

"This is great news and I can’t wait to get to New York to finish up my training, get in the ring next Saturday and teach Paulie Malignaggi a lesson," said the 23-year-old.

"He’s been running his mouth for a while now and was probably hoping I wouldn’t get into New York. Well, Paulie, I’m on my way and you’re going to be my next knockout victim."

The fight against Brooklyn-based Malignaggi, who is nicknamed ‘Magic Man’, is Khan’s second defence of his WBA title following his defeat of Dmitriy Salita in December.

Italian-American Malignaggi, 29, has suffered three defeats in his 30-fight career and in contrast to Khan’s 16 knockouts, has only five to his name.

One of those defeats came when he was stopped by Ricky Hatton in round 11 of a Las Vegas fight in November 2008.

Upon hearing the news about Khan’s visa, Malignaggi said, "Welcome back to America, Amir. Now get ready for some punishment."

As well as terrestrial early-hours coverage in the UK, the fight will be shown on HBO in the US.

The bout is Khan’s first since he announced in January he was splitting from promoter Frank Warren.

This article is from the BBC News website. © British Broadcasting Corporation, The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.

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