Karachi: Former world heavyweight champion Mike Tyson and another top professional pugilist Amir Khan will be in Islamabad to witness the second Benazir Shaheed international Boxing Tournament starting December 20.

Pakistan Boxing Federation secretary Akram Khan said Amir, who has already agreed to inaugurate the tournament, had talked to Tyson on behalf of the federation.

"Amir has officially given an invitation to Tyson to visit Islamabad for the tournament and he has agreed but asked for dates," Khan said.

Amir lost his WBC and IBF light heavyweight title to American Lamont Petersen in Washington on Sunday. But Khan said Amir remains a hero in Pakistan and his presence would be a big boost for the international tournament.

"We already have confirmations from some 20 countries including India to take part in the event which will be held under tight security once again," he said.

The first Benazir International Tournament was held in Karachi in 2010 behind closed doors with public not allowed inside the hall but the organisers had set up giant screens around the hall for spectators.

Khan said hopefully Tyson would also visit Islamabad for the opening ceremony and that would allow Pakistan to present a soft image of itself in the international sporting fraternity.

Tyson, a former world heavyweight champion, had a controversial career but is regarded as a legend in boxing.