Sunday, March 26, 2023  |



Froch and Groves at loggerheads but IBF orders rematch



Perhaps the most eagerly anticipated news in British boxing at the moment is whether or not Carl Froch and George Groves will engage in a rematch of their superb November encounter, which Froch won by controversial ninth-round stoppage.

Ever since referee Howard Foster halted the action, prematurely for most, there has been public and media demand for a super middleweight sequel. Groves initially seemed obsessed with securing a return fight, while Froch seemed eager to look elsewhere.

The following statement was issued by Matchroom Promotions:

“There has been plenty of speculation over the last few weeks regarding my future,” said Froch, who holds the IBF title at 168 pounds. “As it stands we are looking closely at two options, George Groves and Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.

“Yesterday, we made a seven figure offer to George Groves for a second fight that would have seen him earn around double that of the first. Disappointingly, George rejected this offer, so we are continuing our talks with Top Rank and HBO regarding Chavez Jr.”

Groves’ purse for the first Froch fight was reported to be £500,000 (roughly $825,000) so, doing the math, it would appear that the Londoner has been offered at least one million pounds to do it again.

“I understand the demand for the Groves fight in the U.K., but also the demand in the U.S. for the Chavez fight,” said Froch. “Talks are ongoing and no doubt some further news will break soon. I’m happy to fight anyone, as I have done throughout my entire career.”

Within hours George Groves gave his reaction.

“I am unsure why Carl Froch has released a statement implying I do not wish to take the fight, as I was under the impression we were still in negotiations,” said Groves. “The Matchroom offer came with many stipulations and options that I felt were unsatisfactory.

“I am currently awaiting an improved offer from his promoter, as well as speaking to other promoters interested in promoting this fight.

“If I didn’t want to fight Carl Froch then I wouldn’t have invested so much time and money into appealing with the IBF, over the dubious outcome of the first fight, and I await the outcome of that hearing in the very near future.”

Groves didn’t have long to wait long as the IBF has now formally ordered an “immediate” rematch.

Tom Gray is a member of the British Boxing Writers’ Association and has contributed to various publications. Follow him on Twitter: @Tom_Gray_Boxing

Photo by Alex Livesey/Getty Images