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What next for George Groves?

It’s been over a week since George Groves lost a split decision to Badou Jack in Las Vegas for the WBC super middleweight title. The defeat marked his third failed attempt at winning world gold, having previously let the IBF and WBA straps slip through his hands.

It was always going to be a huge hurdle to overcome for Groves, who was knocked down in the first of a scheduled twelve rounds. And although the Hammersmith man recovered well, and gathered himself in the following 33 minutes, Badou Jack’s performance proved too much, with judges’ scoring the contest: 114-113 to Groves, and 115-112 & 116-111 respectively, to Jack.

Unfortunately, Groves will not be able to draw comfort from the narrow nature of this loss. A sentiment expressed in a statement released by him days after the fight:  

“Firstly I would like to thank everyone who showed me so much support for the fight last week, especially the British fans who travelled out for it. Ultimately it doesn’t matter how you lose a world title fight, the feeling is much the same. I lost a split decision as the challenger away from home after being knocked down in the very first round. I came very close to achieving a life-long goal but it wasn’t to be. I’m now going to spend some time with my family and decide upon my future”.

So what now for the 27-year-old? What does his immediate future hold?

Prior to September 12th, many were pre-empting an all-British unification bout between Groves and bitter rival Degale. Perhaps not. Just as unlikely, is a rematch with Badou Jack, who expressed his intentions post fight to move up to 175 next year.

It’s possible that Groves could feature at European level again. A backward step perhaps, but a level from where he can rebuild confidence from. And with the likes of Callum Smith, Martin Murray and Rocky Fielding impressing domestically, time is of the essence.  

George Groves has arrived at a decisive point in his career. He needs to regroup, reassess, and rekindle his ambition to make a life-long dream a reality.   

 

Posted: 21st Sep 2015

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