Groves gunning for Jack title triumph on Mayweather undercard
Londoner George Groves enters the MGM Grand ring in Las Vegas this weekend aiming to become the WBC super-middleweight champion with a victory over Swedish competitor Badou Jack, on the undercard of Floyd Mayweather’s last ever fight with Andre Berto.
The 27-year-old claimed beating a Mayweather fighter on the undefeated American’s final fight night would make a triumph even sweeter, as he enters his first bout since November last year.
Groves has enjoyed back-to-back wins over Christopher Rebrasse and Denis Douglin since being toppled by the now retired Carl Froch at Wembley last May, and is 6/4 with Coral to stop his latest opponent Jack in Vegas.
Having come through two tough bouts last year, recovering from consecutive stoppages by Froch, Groves holds no fear going into his dream super-middleweight title contest, claiming 31-year-old Jack is just another fighter.
“Boxing in Vegas is always exciting,” said Groves. “I boxed out there as an amateur and a professional – always successfully. Plus this time obviously [there is] a substantial belt on the line. So I’m extremely excited. When you’re a kid you dream about boxing and headlining.
“One of those feats is to fight for a world title in Vegas. Now I have a chance to fulfil that. Boxing in Mayweather’s hometown isn’t a problem, it makes sense. Just another fighter.
“There are no fighters I’d never do business. I do not mind who it is. It could be anyone in the world. I’m sure I’ll beat anyone in the world the way I’m training while performing right now. So it’s going to be even sweeter that it is on a Floyd boy.”
After fighting in front of a sell-out Wembley crowd of 80k passionate boxing fans last year, Groves has played down the magnitude of his next outing in Vegas, an insult towards Mayweather’s promotional skills, and is 12/5 to secure a points decision victory this time around.
“So, Badou’s a big fight,” he continued. “It’s a fight for me, fighting for the world title, whether undercard or not, in Las Vegas is what people all around the world dream of.
“It’s exciting for me. I’ve been spoiled. I’ve experienced a lot. I’ve been able to take part in a lot of boxing. We hope many more from the future. But, yes. From now on in I’m just going to play this one down. This is just a fight.”
Although, experienced fighter Jack is relishing being the underdog for his latest match-up once again and insisted that such a down-played status would work to his advantage in the defence of his super-middleweight crown.
“I like it. I like it,” said Jack, who is 9/2 to stop Groves. “I was the underdog before [when he won the title against Anthony Dirrell] and changed the role as well. We saw what happened in there? It’s less pressure. So I like it. I think I’m a better technical fighter. A better, smarter fighter.
“But the name of the game is hit, and don’t get hit. And I definitely got better defence so it’s a 50-50 fight and I think that’s where you don’t know who’s going to win. That’s what makes it so exciting. So I think I’m the best fighter and I’m 110 per cent confident that we’re going to win this fight.”
Before unbeaten pound-for-pound king Mayweather enters the ring on his familiar stomping ground of Vegas, Groves will be aiming to steal some of the limelight and finally add a world title to his British, commonwealth and European belts.
Watch Groves make a statement during his press conference in Las Vegas alongside Mayweather and Jack.