As the buildup to the huge May 31 bout between Carl Froch and George Groves intensifies, the pair appeared together on Sky Sports’ Ringside programme on Thursday. This was an opportunity that Groves could not turn down to verbally batter his opponent.
The first fight between the two men in November of last year and was preceded by weeks of verbal sparring. Groves is keen for this to continue, as per Mike Dawes for the Daily Mail.
The Londoner, who controversially lost the first contest, said of Froch that “He's out of his depth. He can't win and everything he is doing now in the build-up to this fight is for acceptance. He has accepted that he can't win this fight.”
Claiming that a man who has been in 11 world title fights, and winning nine of them, is out of his depth is strong stuff. However, Groves is not afraid to speak his mind and is convinced he is more accomplished in the ring than the WBA and IBF super middleweight champion.
Groves continued, per Dawes:
Froch has insecurities and seeks reassurance. Before the first fight he was telling me that members of my team were telling him that he was going to win and spreading rumours that I'm getting knocked out in sparring. He needs to feel loved. He needs to be told constantly 'you're doing well, you're doing great'.
When I box Carl Froch, whether he's mentally on his A Game or whether he falls to pieces he's still not going to be quicker than me, he's still not going to have better movement than me, he won't have a better defence than me. I'm still going to hurt him every time I hit him.
It doesn't matter if he is on song, whether he trains harder than ever, whether he feels good in himself. It makes no difference to the facts. He's in a big fight, he's going to earn a lot of money, he's going to retire after he loses. He's in a fight he can't win.
Despite the calculated attempt to rile the champion, Froch would not bite and remained calm throughout the exchanges. The Cobra even conceded that he now thinks much more highly of Groves, as a fighter, than he did previously and that the decision in the first bout may have been wrong.
Froch said, per Dawes:
It may have been stopped early, but had it gone on the result would've been the same. ...
I'm in a much better place. There's nothing he can say that is going to wind me up. It's impossible.
The Boxing Ireland Twitter account gave this verbal sparring round to Groves:
Groves verbally running rings around Froch (as per). How much does it mean? Usually not much, but with this pair I think it's more important— Boxing Ireland (@LoveIrishBoxing) May 1, 2014
Fight promoter Eddie Hearn was also in attendance, and he was keen to point out just what a huge spectacle the rematch between the two is set to be at Wembley Stadium.
Hearn said, per Dawes:
We had 60,000 go on sale initially and then we had to approach Transport For London and Brent Council for the additional 20,000. Around half of those were sold today as ticket only and the remaining 10,000 are to come on coaches to ease the congestion problems on the tube.
I think 5,000 or 6,000 of those are gone already so we're up to 76,000 as we sit here and the rest will go in due course.
There is heated debate in the boxing community as to who will win this all-British matchup. In the first meeting, Groves was ahead on the judges’ scorecards when the fight was controversially stopped in the ninth round by referee Howard Foster, leaving the issue unresolved.
St. George may be convinced that he will emerge victorious, but the bookmakers disagree. As per Oddschecker.com, Froch is the odds-on favourite to win the rematch, and the bookies are expecting another stoppage for the Nottingham man.