© Tom Hogan - Hoganphotos / Golden Boy Promotions
Last night at Las Vegas' famed Mandalay Bay Casino, WBA light welter champ Amir Khan proved he could hang in there with a big puncher as he fended off the challenge of Marcos Maidana over 12 hard fought rounds.
Khan surprised the heavy-handed body-puncher Maidana by going right after him once the fight started and amazingly downed the Argentine hard man with a body shot near the close of round one.
Maidana beat the count and began to push back but was getting outboxed badly by the fast-handed Khan. But the Englishman began to slow down as the bout wore on and Maidana picked up rounds behind an aggressive approach that wore on the champion.
Khan got his second wind in the eighth frame and outboxed the challenger before Maidana again took over in the tenth but the South American could not catch the champion fully.
The last two rounds saw back and forth action with neither man able to put a real dent in the other as Khan swept the cards by scores of 114-111, 114-111 and 113-112.
Khan survives his toughest test as a champion and improves to 24-1 (17), while Maidana falls to 29-2 (27).
Also on the bill, light welter contenders Victor Ortiz, 28-2-2 (22), and Lamont Petersen, 28-1-1 (14), fought to a ten round majority draw in a great boxer, puncher battle that saw stylist Petersen on the floor twice in the third.