COMMENTARY| IBF and WBA super-middleweight championship boxer Carl Froch may have received an early Christmas gift this past Saturday. Froch scored a controversial 9th round stoppage victory over challenger George Groves. The bout took place at the Phones4u Arena in Manchester. The defeat was Groves’s first as a professional.
The challenger, George Groves, started the fight out very well, as he stunned Carl Froch with a right hand in the first round, which sent Froch to canvas. Although clearly dazed by the knockdown Froch, being the the warrior that he is known for in the ring got up off the canvas and continued the fight.
The 25 year old Groves continued to use his superior speed and footwork against the veteran Froch, who looked to be slow and outclassed. Groves was able to repeatedly catch Froch with the right hand that he hurt Froch with in the first round. However, Groves maybe got a bit too overconfident, and began to trade a bit too much with the heavy handed Froch as the bout carried on.
The controversy from the bout stemmed from the 9th round stoppage by referee Howard Foster. Froch was able to catch Groves with a clean shot that clearly dazed Groves. Groves managed to stay on his feet, but was forced up against the ropes by a continued onslaught of hard punches from Carl Froch. Foster, sensing that George Groves was badly hurt and unable to continue, made the decision to stop the fight. Groves was ahead on all three judges scorecards at the time of the stoppage.
Although George Groves (19-1-0) suffered his first professional loss, he walked away as a hero in the eyes of the fans. During the post fight interview with both fighters, Groves was showered with a sea of cheers from the fans as he spoke at the Phones4u Arena. Froch (32-2-0) defended the stoppage during the interview, but was rained with boos by the fans as he offered justification for the referee’s stoppage that resulted in Froch’s 23rd knockout victory as a professional.
A widespread demand for a rematch has ruled post fight talk more than the actual bout. A rematch probably wouldn’t benefit Froch at this point in his career. Froch was clearly the older fighter against Groves, but he also looked older as he was clearly being outclassed by the younger Groves.
Although a rematch is currently in high demand, it would probably look exactly the same way the first bout did, but with George Groves being the likely victor next time. Although George Groves tasted his first defeat, he has nothing to be ashamed of. However, it would benefit him more if he fought a smarter fight, rather than trying to make a statement.