Nottingham’s Carl Froch will take on American Yusaf Mack, the boxer who only a few weeks ago called him a ‘fake Joe Calzaghe’.
Froch will defend his IBF Super Middleweight title on Saturday night at the Capital FM Arena in his home town.
“I got under his skin with the Calzaghe comment and I hope that's to my advantage on the night” said Mack. Mack’s comments have obviously rattled ‘The Cobra’, but this has only spurred his drive to defeat his opponent.
Speaking at the final press conference on Tuesday, Mack, 32, said he doesn’t mind being labelled second best: “I like being the underdog, I’ve been an underdog all my life.”
Froch is expected to beat Mack comfortably but the Froch camp are not dismissing Mack as an easy opponent. Coach Robert McCcracken praised Froch’s innate determination and intensity calling him a “very young 35 year old, who could go on for as long as he wants.”
Froch defeated Canadian based Romanian boxer Lucien Bute in a spectacular five-round stoppage in Nottingham in May.
“It will be difficult to top the Bute fight, a lot of people had me as the underdog then and nobody expected it, so it's going to be difficult to eclipse that.” Said Froch.
Froch is being hailed as one of Britain’s greatest boxer’s and Saturday’s fight will be his ninth consecutive World Title clash.
Froch who started boxing professionally at 25, believes he is at his “personal best” now and a lot of it is down to his style of boxing.
“I don’t take a lot of punches, I don’t get punished, and that’s why I’m so fresh at 35. I don’t get beat up,” he said.
Froch has no qualms about continually fighting the top names in boxing and has his sights set on future opponents.
He has no plans to retire just yet, and 2013 may be an exciting year for the boxer. There are talks of rematches with contenders Andre Ward, and Bute which are both likely to happen next year overseas. But if Froch could have just one rematch, he said he would choose Mikkel Kessler who he suffered a defeat to in Denmark two years ago.
“Kessler is a man who comes to fight and it would be the most entertaining fight for the boxing fans,” said Froch.
For now, Froch’s only focus is on his challenger this Saturday in front of another packed out home crowd. “It means so much to have the support from home and it’s so humbling fighting in my home town” he says.
Froch’s promoter Eddie Hearn has big plans for Froch abroad: "Carl has unfinished business elsewhere and we're willing to go there, be live on the big American networks and make it happen.
"This could be one of the last times to see Carl in the UK, potentially ever," added Hearn.
Carl Froch fights Yusaf Mack on Saturday night from 8pm on Sky Sports 1. Froch is the 1-18 favourite.