By Terence Dooley
James DeGale and George Groves will put their perfect pro records on the line for DeGale’s British 168lb title on May 21st; the two boxers are 10-0 (8) and 12-0 (10) respectively. Contrary to other website and forum whispers, we can reveal that the fight will take place at London’s O2 Arena and will be chief support to Nathan Cleverly’s WBO title light-heavyweight challenge to Germany’s Juergen Braehmer.
Promoter Frank Warren revealed the date, venue and some bill details at a press conference in London today, he also expressed his delight at finally bringing DeGale and Groves together.
David Coldwell, Head of Boxing at Hayemaker, was also on hand. Dave initially won the right to stage the clash with a whopping £400,000 purse bid. Two weeks ago, Adam Booth, who trains and manages Groves, confirmed to me that they were in discussion with Warren with an eye on transferring the fight to one of Frank’s shows.
However, the BBBoC released a championship circular last week announcing that the bout would be promoted by Coldwell and was set to take place at London’s Olympia on April 9th. This proclamation was a provisional one as the parties were still working on the fine details of this eagerly awaited domestic grudge match.
Groves sharpened his tools recently with a TKO win over Daniel Adotey Allotey; DeGale posted a stoppage win against Alpay Kobal in Scotland last weekend.
“Saint” George told me that he does not need DeGale to further his own career but is prepared to snatch “Chunky’s” British title en route to world class; DeGale refers to Groves as “Ugly kid”, recently telling this writer that his former amateur conqueror is trying to ape mentor David Haye and will suffer as a consequence. It all adds up to an interesting build-up, an intense atmosphere, both men hail from London, and it is bound to be an intriguing fight.
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