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George Groves v Chris Eubank Jr. preview: Eubank to prove his credentials

Cian Carroll | 16 February 2018

Battle of Britain should get the pulse pounding

George Groves and Chris Eubank Jr. meet in the semi-finals of the World Boxing Super Series in Manchester on Saturday night.

The super middleweight bout has long been anticipated and is the biggest fight of the year to date.

This is a fascinating clash for a handful of reasons. But primarily for the as yet unanswered question: is Eubank Jr. as good as he and his fans think?

The Coral News Team delves into this huge match-up and hand out some predictions…

Styles make fights

A combination of different elements makes this such an intriguing fight.

Groves is more experienced, and, more importantly, he’s also the naturally bigger guy.

After two super fights with Carl Froch – in which he lost both – and a loss to Badou Jack in Vegas, the 29-year-old has been there and done it.

Even in defeat, Groves has proven his credentials at world level. Eubank Jr., on the other hand, is more of an unknown quantity.

The 28-year-old’s only major fight to date was a defeat to Billy Joe Saunders back in 2014. That was a contentious decision, too. Many thought Jr. did enough to win the fight.

Eubank Jr. is a ferocious puncher, and although he’s a natural middleweight, he still hits extremely hard at super middle.

Groves, though, is arguably the smarter boxer. He’s got good ring IQ, whereas Eubank Jr. will rely on technique and speedy combinations.

Predictions

The odds suggest this is will be a seriously close fight, and they’re probably not wrong. Groves is actually 11/8 outsider, while Eubank Jr. is 4/7 favourite.

Both fighters will have different motivations. Groves is constantly underestimated as a boxer and he’ll be out to prove, once again, he’s top dog.

Eubank Jr. will be looking to move out from under his famous father’s shadow and walk the walk.

The pair were former sparring partners years ago, and according to various accounts, all those sessions were action-packed and extremely close, so this bout could be initially cagey.

Don’t expect a first-round blow-up. This one should go into the later rounds, or even to the scorecards.

The Coral News Team is going to get off the fence and side with Eubank Jr.

Groves is the proven fighter at this level, and he’s the slightly bigger man, but it’s hard to get away from Eubank’s combination of speed and power.

He’s also a nasty, ruthless boxer and does not care about hurting his opponent. The 7/4 on offer for a Eubank Jr. KO/TKO or Disqualification is worth backing.

In the Round Group betting, it could pay to get involved on the 6/1 about Eubank Jr. winning in rounds 9-12.

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All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing

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