The pre-fight phoney war between Carl Froch and George Groves hit new heights yesterday when the pair flung a succession of bad-tempered insults at each other at a feisty press conference ahead of Saturday night’s world super-middleweight title showdown in Manchester on Thursday.
Froch claimed Groves would “run for his life” once he got in the ring, while the unbeaten challenger responded with a detailed breakdown of how he was going to relieve Froch of his WBA and IBF titles.
Groves has been goading his opponent regularly in the pre-fight build-up but Froch responded on Thursday: “What you’ve been saying for 10 weeks is pathetic. You’ve embarrassed yourself and on Saturday night I’m going to put it right.”
Froch is adamant he is in for a long overdue easy night after a series of punishing title challenges and defences, including his thrilling win over Mikkel Kessler in his last fight in London in May.
The 36-year-old added: “When you have mixed with the quality of opponents I have been in with for so long you do not get scared by an opponent like George Groves.
“My experience at the top level, my punching power and George’s lack of ability to take a punch is going to be why he’s going to come to the ring and run for his life and he’s not going to stand and fight.”
Froch had watched on bemused as Groves began the press conference by revealing an elaborate so-called game-plan. “I’m going to come out in the centre of the ring and meet you in the first round with the jab then hit you with two right hands just to let you know I’m there,” he declared.
“In the second round I’m going to do the same – I’m going to win the jab exchanges and hit him with more right hands. In the third round I’m going to come out and push him on to the back foot – then you’re going to have to wait and see what’s coming next.”
Despite going into the fight as the underdog, it is worth remembering that Groves enters the fight with a 19-fight unbeaten record, including his best win in another grudge match against James DeGale in May 2011.
The 25-year-old also heads into the fight on a run of three consecutive knockout wins, including a fifth-round stoppage of Noe Gonzalez Alcoba in his last outing in May.
Groves insisted: “I’ve never been knocked out but Carl says I’m chinny. Carl says he’s got one-punch knockout power but he doesn’t really knock out too many people – he’s contradicted himself so often it’s hard to follow.”
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