Promoter Dennis Hobson has signed Kash Ali and believes he can get the controversial heavyweight into the British top six within a couple of fights and, ultimately, the first British Asian to win the British Heavyweight Title.
Rotherham-based Ali is most famous for his notorious fight with David Price in March at Liverpool’s Echo Arena. During the contest, in which Ali appeared to be getting on top of a tiring Price, he was disqualified from the contest during round five after – seemingly inexplicably – taking bites out of his opponent!
Since that loss, after which Ali apologised to Price and was fined and suspended by the British Boxing Board of Control, it has been revealed that Kash lost his father not long before the contest and wasn’t in the right of frame of mind ahead of the bout.
With his suspension set to be lifted by early October, and with his ledger now at 15-1 (7), Ali is now training with former heavyweight contender, Richard Towers. And Hobson says the 27-year-old has served his punishment and now deserves a second chance.
“He gets his ban lifted soon,” explained Hobson. “He lost his dad not long before the Price fight and he’s said that wasn’t really him in there. It’s not an excuse for his behaviour, and he apologised to David Price, who is a gentleman and accepted it. It was unsportsmanlike, but his mind wasn’t there, and I think we can give him this one. He knows it’s a kick up the backside, and he’s knuckled down. I had no qualms about signing him and believe everyone deserves a second chance.
“It’s crazy because he’d got himself into a position where he was beating Price in their fight, and Price is now back in the heavyweight mix after his win over Dave Allen. So, I really do believe we can get Kash right into the mix too, and I believe he’s in the top 10 of the British heavyweights right now. In the next two or three fights, I think he’ll be in the top six.
“I haven’t had a heavyweight for a while and I’m excited. I had Dave Allen at the start of his career, and he’s another fighter who could have achieved much more if he’d applied himself. He’s taken fights not in condition, taken heavy punishment and probably shortened his career, which is a shame because I like David a lot. Whereas Kash is so fresh. When you look at what Price did to Allen, then you can see Kash’s potential. Kash was close to stopping Price, and if they ever fight again, Kash would do a number on him.”
“I can’t wait to get back and show people the real me,” reiterated Kash. “The six months ban has flown by, and I’m really looking forward to getting back in the ring. It’s time to fight again.
“I’m very excited to be teaming up with Dennis. Dennis has worked with some good fighters and taken them to the top, like Ricky Hatton, Clinton Woods and Jamie McDonnell. He knows the game and, at this stage of my career, can push me on.
“Training is going good with Richard; I’m loving it and learning new stuff. I’ve known Richard for a long time, have sparred with him before, and we’ve got a good relationship. He has boxed at heavyweight and sparred all the top guys, and he’s been around Manny Steward. So, he’s got good experience and I’m learning a lot.
“The fight against Price was going how we expected. He’s a big puncher but when I watch it back, I did the hard part and didn’t get hit with anything stupid. I did take some shots, but didn’t go down and recovered. The fifth round was my round, there’s no point talking about what could have been, but the truth is that he didn’t beat me, I beat myself. The only good thing is that it shows I’m at that level. With Price against Dave Allen it was a one-sided boxing lesson, so it shows people where I’m at. I wasn’t right going into that fight, but I showed glimpses of what I’ve got.
“In 2020 I want to be in some big fights. At heavyweight, you’re only a couple of fights away from something big. If the British Title opportunity came along then I’d definitely want to fight for it, it’s a prestigious belt. I don’t want to stay at British level in the future though, I want to go beyond it.
“I don’t need to prove anything to the people that know me, because they know I’m not a bad guy. The people that don’t know me, and the first time they’ve seen me and I’m taking a chunk out of David Price, they are not going to think I’m a nice guy! I’m not a bad person though, and as my career goes on, people will realise that.”