Former world champion welterweight Kell Brook spoke to William Hill’s Simon Jordan, explaining that he feels long-time rival Amir Khan “100 percent ducked” fighting him because of the pressure of facing a domestic rival.

Brook spoke candidly about his bitter rivalry with Khan.

“When people say that I hate Amir Khan, I just hated the fact that he was bugging me wherever I went,” he said. “People always brought it up asking when we were going to fight – I was sick of it. I think he 100 percent ducked the fight with me. It’s different when you lose to Canelo Alvarez or Manny Pacquiao, you can try and say ‘well at least I fought them’, but with a domestic fight there is a lot more pressure. It’s hard to deal with and I don’t think he was scared of me; I think he was scared of that. There was a big build up for this fight for many years and we eventually got there.”

Promoter Frank Warren had both Brook and Khan under his wing, but the Sheffield fighter believes it was Khan that was put on a pedestal instead of him.

“I’ve never been fixated on him Amir Khan or jealous of him. Whenever he’s boxed away, I’ve wanted him to go out and win, I’ve never wanted him to lose.” Brook said.

“With the Olympics and how Frank Warren put him on a pedestal, I used to be on these same shows and I’d be at the bottom of the bill. He’s always had that push more than me and he’s had the easy road, while I’ve had to do it the hard way, the proper way.

“Frank Warren signed me up and he promised that me and him [Khan] would branch off and then eventually would meet. It just went on and on and never happened. It’s a fight that should have happened sooner and was kept away from the fans for many years.”

Brook mentioned how he knew the Khan fight, when it eventually happened, would define his career, despite him having been world champion.  

After years of rivalry, Brook wiped Khan out in a one-sided contest in 2022.

“I’d never trained for a fight like I did for that one, because I knew I’d boxed all these world champions but I will be remembered for my fight with Khan,” Brook said.

“He’s got to live for the rest of his life knowing that I beat him, I just wanted to put 100 percent into that fight so that if I did come up short, there would have been no excuses. I knew I was a better fighter and that timing beats speed. People were telling me he was panicking in the dressing room, and I was just going with it. I liked that fight because everyone really had it at 50/50, that’s what made it so interesting and appealing for the fans, but I knew I would win.”

Despite everything that has been said of their rivalry, Brook revealed he has respect for the Bolton fighter and doesn’t believe Khan was intentionally trying to gain an edge with performance enhancing drugs. Khan tested positive for a banned substance in the aftermath of their contest.

“I’ve got respect for Amir Khan, and I truly think that in his heart he didn’t know he had [PED’s] in his system. The reason being because at the start of negotiations, he made it clear for us to be consistently tested and nothing ever came back. We were both being tested so regularly before the fight and even taking them on the night of the fight wouldn’t have had any benefits. I’m just being honest.”