17
Oct
2019

Post-fight fallout: One step forward for George Groves, two steps back for Chris Eubank Jr.

Joe Hewlett 21/02/2018

The World Boxing Super Series provided yet another pulsating bout as George Groves proved his worth once again, this time against Chris Eubank Jr.

On one side you had a legitimate world champion, an established, experienced super-middleweight in Groves, whilst on the other side, you had a fresh, hungry but unproven challenger in Eubank Jr.

Despite the stats favouring Groves, the bookmakers and pundits alike made the Shane McGuigan fight the underdog.

It was an enthralling contest with both displaying good old British grit and determination. If being honest, Groves weathered any potential storm, delivering a masterclass to win on the scorecards, 117-112, 116-112 and 115-113.

His performance demonstrated why he was seeded number one in the WBSS from the beginning and it certainly silenced those who questioned how much the Brit had left in the tank after wars with the likes of Carl Froch and Badou Jack.

Since joining up with McGuigan, the pair have now won all seven of their match-ups and are only getting better with each fight.

There is an obvious trust between the duo and more importantly, they click – a huge amount of credit has to be given to McGuigan – the trainer has picked up the pieces following the Jack defeat and has made Saint George into a world beater.

However, after suffering a dislocation to the shoulder, there are doubts as to whether Groves will make it in time to fight for the Muhammed Ali Trophy.

A selection of super-middleweights including long-term rival James DeGale will certainly be interested in replacing Groves for the final, though Kalle Sauerland will be desperate for the number one seed to recover in time. Sauerland should try and postpone the tournament for as long as possible, Groves has been the clear stand-out in the series and deserves the chance earn more millions.

Meanwhile, Eubank Jr was outwitted, outfought and outclassed. Nobody can question the desire of Jr and he certainly has the attributes to become world champion but where does he go from here?

A lot of hype surrounded the ‘Next Gen’ star, but this was his second time on the big stage and he has failed to deliver twice. A big change is needed.

Eubank Jr must follow the blueprint of Groves and hire a new team, and that includes a promoter. The 28-year-old has been protected by his father for too long and has to move out of his comfort zones if he is to flourish.

Perhaps a move to the States would be required as well as moving back down to middleweight?

Many have criticised the performance of Jr. but let’s not take the limelight from Groves and co.

They executed the perfect game plan and look like they will be a force to be reckoned for at least another few years.

Joe Hewlett is lead writer for World Boxing News. Follow Joe on Twitter @Hewlett95

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