Challenger George Groves (19-1, 15 KO’s) expects to be able to hit IBF/WBA super middleweight champion Carl Froch (32-2 23 KO’s) at will with him not being able to do a thing about it in their rematch on May 31st at the Wembley Arena in London, England. Groves is in the opinion that Froch was given a gift by referee Howard John Foster last November in their previous fight when Foster disrupted the fight by jumping in and halting the fight in the 9th round when two fighters were still engaged in a toe-to-toe battle.
Groves believes that he would have won that fight had Foster not prematurely halted the bout. The International Boxing Federation believed that Groves deserved a rematch after he appealed the stoppage loss to them. They didn’t overturn the defeat, but they did agree that the referee halted the fight prematurely after a slow motion replay of the 9th round was presented to them.
Groves said “Everything for a reason; No, Carl, this is perfection for me now. Everything I do in this fight will be for a reason. If I choose to hit you; it’s not that I choose to hit you in the head or body or if I choose to hit you on the chin or choose to hit you on the nose, on the ear, in the ribs, on the elbow, wherever I want, Carl. That’s where I’m going to hit you. Understand that; understand that now. In the first training camp we went in believing; now we’re going in knowing. There’s nothing he can take from the first fight other than the gift that he got in the 9th round from Howard John Foster. He got nothing. He was totally spent.”
Whether Groves would have been able to come back and win the fight last November is unclear, as we’ll never know due to Foster stopping it before the fight got a chance to play out. But if Groves is able to hit Froch at will in the rematch like he says he will, then he has a very good chance of beating Froch and avenging his past defeat. However, Groves is going to need to pace himself better this time because he can’t wear down in the rematch and still expect to win the fight.
Groves looked like he had trained for just a 7 round fight last November, because he didn’t have much left by the 7th round. Groves will need to make sure that he is able to keep fighting hard after the 7th for him to get the ‘W’ on May 31st.
One thing that Groves also needs to work on is getting away from Froch after he throws a punch and/or comes inside. Groves was hit a lot when he would back away from clinches or after throwing punches. He didn’t do a good job of pulling away quickly. Groves would cover up and either stand still or back away slowly. This would lead to Froch unloading on him with flurries of heavy shots. Groves can’t do that on May 31st and except to win the fight because Froch will bury him with punches.