By Clive Bernath: According to the Daily Telegraph, British Boxing Board of Control secretary Robert Smith has ruled out any thoughts of a rematch between bitter rivals James DeGale and George Groves.
Groves claimed the British super-middleweight crown when he out-pointed DeGale via a majority decision at the 02 Arena in London on Saturday night. DeGale and his promoter Frank Warren have called for an immediate rematch but Smith sees no reason to grant a return bout just yet.
Speaking to Gareth Davies of the Telegraph Smith said; “An immediate re-match is out of the question. The Board will not be ordering a re-match. There was nothing controversial or contentious about it. No one broke any rules. Why would the Board order a re-match ? It was simply a very close fight, and there was nothing wrong with the decision.”
Groves was judged a 115-114 points winner on two of the judges cards while the third official saw the fight even at 115-115. Under the board’s rules Groves is entitled to a voluntary defence before engaging in a mandatory bout within six months of becoming champion.
Smith added: “DeGale could come back as mandatory challenger. If DeGale is the leading contender in six months’ time, he will be made mandatory challenger. If DeGale has anything about him, he will come back stronger from this. It was a test of how he grows. It will not have done him any harm at all.”
It would make sense for both Groves and DeGale to continue building their respective careers, gain more experience, climb the world rankings and build up to a much bigger fight in a year or two’s time. They are both fantastic talents and have plenty of time on their hands. Maybe in a couple of years a truly deserved massive super fight could take place one of west London’s Soccer stadiums? Now that would be an event worth waiting for.
May 24, 2011