Advertisement
Advertisement
Boxingscene.com

George Groves Flying High, James DeGale in Disbelief

George Groves fulfilled his promise to end James DeGale's unbeaten record with a contentious majority-decision win over his bitter rival at a raucous O2 Arena on Saturday night.

The build-up to the British and Commonwealth super-middleweight title contest was dominated by spiteful bickering and goading between the unbeaten former amateur team-mates.

DeGale, the 2008 Olympic gold medalist, had vowed to avenge his defeat by Groves in the 2006 ABA championships but lightning struck twice as two judges made Groves the winner by a single point and the other had it level.

The former Dale Youth ABC team-mates had at one point seemed unlikely to meet until much further down the road, but such is the ill-feeling between them they made the fight happen sooner rather than later.

DeGale (10-0, 8KOs) came into the fight as favourite against the marginally more experienced Groves (12-0, 10KOs), largely because of the form shown in their most recent championship-level contests when DeGale stopped quality British champion Paul Smith and Groves struggled against Kenny Anderson.

A crowd of 19,000 gave Hammersmith's Groves a much warmer reception than divisive DeGale was afforded.

Harlesden's DeGale is used to being booed, though, and seemed to keep his cool in the early stages, edging a tentative opening round and finishing it with a strong one-two which was the best work of the round.

Groves improved in the second, during which DeGale was warned for use of the shoulder up close. DeGale produced perhaps the best work though as a left-right-left combination up close landed solidly.

Groves was trying to out-box the boxer and largely avoiding punishment, but was caught by a left hand early in the third and a hard right two minutes later.

Groves had a superb fourth, keeping faith with his tactics to land a right over the top and as the round wore on, two stiff right counters. DeGale landed a good right jab of his own but Groves finished strongly.

A very cagey sixth was edged by DeGale, who came out of a brief exchange better with a winged left and landed a straight left on the nose towards the round's conclusion.

For the most part it was Groves who looked quicker and sharper but when DeGale had his moments - such as a glancing but powerful left-right double at the end of the seventh - they were more eye-catching.

DeGale's promoter Frank Warren looked concerned at ringside.

In the ninth both men were cut over the left eye and DeGale took the round, finishing with a superb right jab followed by two hard southpaw lefts, arguably the fight's best action to that point.

Groves was also cut under his right eye but DeGale's was worse. The fight was hotting up as Groves took the 10th with three excellent minutes, jabbing and hammering home rights.

Groves was bloodied further in the 11th from a nasty head clash and DeGale won the round by upping his aggression and clubbing home blows.

DeGale was cut under the left eye in the final session but it was immaterial by then, the two men trading leather right to the final bell.

The excitement continued as the verdict was announced, Richie Davies calling it a 115-115 draw but Dave Parris and John Kean awarding it to Groves 115-114.

Groves was content to prove the doubters wrong and claimed he would be willing to fight DeGale again.

"Everyone was raving about him. Only two favoured me in a boxing news poll, but I have self belief," he told BBC Five Live.

"It feels good. I knew I'd won. I knew I'd done enough."

He added: "I will fight him again yeah if everything is all right and it's the right way. But now I have beaten him twice."

A disappointed DeGale disputed the judges' decision, saying: "I'm the champion. What am I to do? That's b******t."

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by shaned175 on 05-21-2011

it was actually 2006 mate

Comment by coghaugen on 05-21-2011

Groves actually beat DeGale as an amateur in 2007, not 2005. At the time of the 2005 ABA's Grove would've been 16 years old.

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (2)
Top Headlines Coldwell on a "Crazy" 2017: Bellew vs. Haye, McDonnell, More Darren Till, UFC Fighter, Inks Pact With MTK Global Parker: I Think We're Close To Locking in Anthony Joshua Fight Jeff Horn Angry: Online Keyboard Warriors Say I Fight Dirty! Wilder: I'll Make Cuban Sandwich Out of 'Bubbles The Chimp' Ortiz! When is a Loss Not a Loss? Photos: Jeff Horn, Gary Corcoran - Face To Face at Final Presser Luis Ortiz: Deontay Wilder is a Coward, I Saw Fear in His Eyes! Arum Denies Pacquiao-McGregor Talk: It's Total Nonsense Salido: All of The Wars Caught Up With Me, I'm an Old Fighter Now Andre Ward: Farmer Robbed, But He Can Bounce Back From This Arum: Lomachenko is Superhuman, Rigo Was Totally Bewildered! Video: Francisco Vargas Talks Comeback Win, Future Plans Lomachenko: Gary Russell Really Doesn't Want a Rematch With Me DeGale Unsure of Career Future, To Decide After New Year White Warns Arum: We'll See Where You Stand When Smoke Clears! Video: Miguel Roman Reflects on KO of Salido, Future Opponents Tevin Farmer: I Worked Too Hard To Get Robbed, I Deserved Win Video: Andre Ward on Loma-Rigo, Salido, Kovalev Return, More Lomachenko On Rigondeaux Injury: I've Fought With One Hand Macklin Expects Michael Conlan To Step Things Up in 2018 Lomachenko vs. Rigondeaux Generates Big Rating For ESPN Marquice Weston Wins, James Ballard Stretched in Upset Arum: Lomachenko Would Make Joke of Mikey Garcia, Make Him Quit Tyson Fury: I'll Annihilate Bellew, Uppercut Him To The Roof! Photos: Miguel Roman Stops, Retires Orlando Salido in a War Lomachenko on Rigondeaux: I Learned Nothing, It Was Easy! Photos: Lomachenko Makes Guillermo Rigondeaux Quit in Six Photos: Michael Conlan, Shakur Stevenson, Diaz, Jennings Win Photos: Jean Pascal Ends Career With Shock Stoppage of Elbiali Truax: The Fights DeGale Kept Talking About - Now They Are Mine! Lomachenko: Rigondeaux is Not a Big Win For Me, Not His Weight Video: Team Rigondeaux Provide Update on Hand Injury Lomachenko-Rigondeaux: CompuBox Punch Stats, Other Facts Arum: Where Did Rigo Hurt His Hand? In The Dressing Room? Video: Vasyl Lomachenko Reacts To Rigondeaux Quitting Lomachenko: I Should Change My Name To 'No Mas Chenko' Orlando Salido: That's It, I'm Done, This Was My Last Fight Miguel Roman Drops, Shocks Orlando Salido For Big TKO Win Orlando Salido vs. Miguel Roman - LIVE BoxingScene Scorecard
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement