By Chris LaBate
British/Commonwealth super middleweight champion George Groves believes James DeGale, the EBU champion, is only fooling himself with his constant boasts of being a world class fighter. Groves won a very close decision over DeGale a few months back. DeGale decisioned Poland’s Piotr Wilczewski on Saturday night to win the European title. Groves defends his belts against Paul Smith next month.
“Let him go around thinking he’s world class if that makes him happy,” Groves told West London Sport. “If I wanted that, then I could have pushed for that, but I wasn’t interested in being linked to world titles. I didn’t fool myself into thinking I was world class just because I’d beaten James DeGale.
"He [DeGale] fought for the European title coming off the back of a loss, which was great for him, but I’m 99% sure that fight was made before he fought me. He was so sure he’d win against me. That’s why I wasn’t making a song and dance, trying to link myself to world title fights. That’s where I’ll be in the future, but I know I’ve got work to do.”
DeGale is hunting for a rematch and wants his revenge, but Groves doesn't appear to be too interested in a return fight.
“My career doesn’t revolve around James DeGale,” Groves insists. “I’ve beaten him twice. I’ve done what I need to. My career is about going on to be a world champion and the best fighter I can be. “I don’t want to just be known as the guy who keeps beating James DeGale. There’s a lot more to me and I’ll show people that.”