By Akwasi Appiah
George Groves defeated Chris Eubank in a unanimous points decision. For fight’s duration, Groves dominated Eubank, other than the last round in which the former dislocated his shoulder.
The Build Up
Eubank entered the ring to Dr. Dre’s ‘Still D.R.E’ with determination on his face. His confidence and brashness were met with a series of boos from the crowd, but many of the fans watching from home were pleased with his song choice. On the other hand, Groves’ gave little away during his walk. His demeanour was a stark contrast to the younger Groves, who before fighting Carl Froch showed signs of nerves. This bout was going to be another test of his emotional temperament. Could Groves keep his cool and not panic?
Still D.R.E that’s a G entrance! 😎 #GrovesEubank
— GRM Daily (@GRMDAILY) February 17, 2018
From when the fight was announced Eubank’s confidence tricked us all into believing in his ability to beat George Groves. His exuberance, physique, and spectacular Instagram videos made sure that he became the bookies favourite.
Chris Eubank Jr 98 Punches In 11 secs
9 punches per second 😲💨💨💨🥊
— EditinKing Boxing 🥊 (@EditinKing) February 4, 2018
However it was not to be. The experienced Groves used his long left-hand jab to keep Eubank at a distance. Eubank tried to close this space, but too often he was pulled in tightly by Groves into a hold and the cycle repeated itself. Eubank had some success at points, but it wasn’t frequent enough to stop the negative reception he received throughout the fight.
Groves cut Eubank with an accidental clash of heads and this played a significant part in the drama of the fight with blood constantly gushing from Eubanks eye turning the referees white shirt pink in a number of places.
Groves’ left jab proved to be a vital component of his arsenal. (Source: World Boxing Super Series)
“He didn’t lie when he said he would grit it out,”
“He didn’t bring pressure because I was hurting him. I dropped him at least once but it didn’t count, which was dubious.”
Groves told ITV Box Office.
Eubank was ever-defiant to reality and he raised his hands in attempt to show confidence in performance. As were his words at the end of the fight
“I thought I did enough in the later rounds to win,” Eubank Jr told ITV Box Office.
“I thought I pressured him the entire fight. I didn’t get hit clean. He cut me, and I couldn’t see. Did I underestimate him? Maybe.”
Eubank Jr told ITV Box Office.
The post-fight commentary from ‘Prince’ Naseem Hamed proved to be a highlight of the evening. The former featherweight champion explicitly suggested that Eubank Jnr should retire. This amused many fight fans, leading Naseem to trend on Twitter.
— BOXING CORNER 24/7 (@boxingcorner247) February 17, 2018
What next for Groves? Could Eubank get another shot?
The future isn’t so clear from George Groves and is very much dependent on how severe his shoulder injury is. Should he manage to recover in time, he will fight the winner of Callum Smith and Jurgen Braemher, for the WBC Diamond Belt in the O2 Arena in May. If he doesn’t manage to recover the Smith vs Braemher fight may become the final. Or rather more intriguingly Eubank may fight the winner in the final despite losing to Groves.