‘King’ Khan is back in action in his second appearance under the Matchroom banner having already dispatched of Phil Lo Greco last April after nearly two years out of the ring in a blistering 39-seconds demolition job in Liverpool.
The 31-year-old Bolton boxer is looking to challenge for world honours at welterweight later this year but first he has his 37th opponent to get past.
Relatively unknown to the British public, BBN dug up some interesting facts about the visiting fighter, Samuel Vargas:
1 Born on April 12th 1989 in Bogota, Columbia, Samuel Andrés Vargas Ariza is currently 29-years-old
2 His father worked five jobs at a time in Columbia to support his poor family and moved to Canada to the Toronto suburb city of Mississauga when Samuel was 15 to find a better life
3 Being one of only two non-speaking English students in his school, he began to get into fights and hung around the streets too much, so his mother stepped in and enrolled him into the local boxing gym, which he says taught him discipline and kept him occupied and out of trouble
4 Young Vargas experienced just 12 amateur fights before turning professional in 2010, aged 20, and raced to 16 fights unbeaten in under four years
5 Vargas has fought 28 times in his native Canada; once in his country of origin, Columbia; twice in Mexico; three times in the States; and this will be his first fight in the UK
6 His first ever title fight was for the WBA-NABA (North American Boxing Association) Canada welterweight strap, which ended in a draw in his eighth outing against ‘Mighty’ Tebor Brosch (6-3-4), who hailed from the very same town of Mississauga, where the fight was also staged.
He managed to win the super-welterweight version of the WBA-NABA five fights later with a seventh-round stoppage of Julius Bunda (5-2-2). In-between those bouts, he also collected the Canadian welterweight belt, known as the NCC title (National Championship of Canada), as well as the interim WBA-NABA welterweight title in his 26th bout, later winning the full version of the WBA-NABA welterweight title in his 28th fight, which he has successfully defended four times since, earning him the No.10 spot in the WBA rankings.
7 Two of his three losses came at the hands of world champions. On 14 days notice, he tackled future IBF welterweight kingpin Errol Spence Jr (15-0) in a 10-round non-title contest in 2015 and was stopped in the fourth-round in a fight that Vargas later admitted was unwinnable but chose to take for the money that would provide a better life for his children and the chance to continue his boxing journey. In November 2015, he managed to reach the seventh-round against heavy-handed two-weight world champion Danny Garcia (32-0), who memorably blasted Amir Khan away in just four-rounds in their 2012 meeting.
8 Despite experiencing over 215 professional rounds during his eight-and-a-half-year career, this forthcoming fight with Khan will be his first ever 12-rounder
9 Vargas’s last appearance in the ring was only a few weeks ago in June against two-time Argentine super-lightweight champion Mauro Maximiliano Godoy (30-3), which ended in a draw, bringing his record up to 29-3-2
10 Vargas is 5’9” tall with a reach of 72”, which gives him ½” height gain and 1” reach advantage over forthcoming foe Amir Khan
Headliner Amir Khan (32-4) will face Samuel Vargas (29-3-2) in the main event at Birmingham Arena on September 8 as he sets his sights on welterweight world honours this year.
Standout fight on the undercard is the eagerly-awaited rematch between British middleweight champion Jason Welborn (23-6) and former titlist Tommy Langford (20-2). The local rivals had their first meeting on May 4 in Walsall in the headlining fight on Black Country Boxing Promotions’ biggest ever event, titled ‘Battle of the Baggies’. Both West Bromwich Albion fans went to war in an early ‘Fight of the Year’ contender with underdog Welborn just stealing the decision with scores of 114-113 twice and 115-113 reversed.
‘Ruthless’ Ryan Kelly (11-1) defends his Midlands Area super-welterweight title that he initially won in 2017 with a narrow points win over unbeaten Adam Harper (7-0) and then reclaimed again last May via seventh-round stoppage at Villa Park against Owen Jobburn (4-2-1). The 24-year-old Birmingham champion defends against unbeaten Dordon man Kelcie Ball (9-0).
Stourbridge banger Sam Eggington (22-4) and super-bantamweight star Gamal Yafai appear on the bill with more title fights and stars to be added shortly.
Tickets are priced £40, £60, £80, £100 and £200 VIP and are available to buy directly from the official Tommy Langford website: https://www.tommylangford.co.uk/tickets/