George Groves and Chris Eubank Jr. clash in the semi-finals of the World Boxing Super Series this Saturday night.
The fight – taking place in Manchester – has been long-anticipated with the pair having a bit of a history.
We asked our boxing trader, a sweet science expert, and all-round top man Tommy Young for his thoughts on the big fight.
Ladbrokes News: Tommy, exactly how big is this bout?
Tommy Young: This is easily the biggest fight of the year so far. All-British affairs of this magnitude and quality are rare. This is a really exciting fight with two big names who are both in their prime and very evenly matched.
LN: Give us your take on WBA champion, George Groves?
TY: Groves is probably best known for his two epic fights with Carl Froch, both ending in defeat. Since then he’s suffered a close loss to the world-class Badou Jack in Vegas. However, he finally won a world title at the 4th attempt by stopping Fedor Chudinov at Bramall Lane last spring.
He stopped Jamie Cox in his Super Series quarter-final, which was a bit of a slugfest, and comes into this fight on the back of 6 straight wins.
Of the two, Groves in the bigger man being a natural super middleweight, whereas Eubank Jr. has fought mostly at middleweight. As well as size advantage, Groves is the more experienced man. He’s had his big night at Wembley, fought out in Vegas and is proven at world level.
LN: And is Eubank Jr. as good as he and his fans would have us believe?
TY: Eubank Jr. – like Groves – suffered a loss in the biggest fight of his career to date when he was outpointed by Billy Joe Saunders back in 2014.
Some observers thought Eubank did enough to win that fight but I’m not sure he did. However, had he not started so slowly that night he probably would have won.
Since then he’s been working his way back to the top and was very impressive in his last win over Avni Yildirim.
Eubank Jr. has a speed advantage over Groves and loves to fire in flashy combinations. Some argue he has more power than Groves too.
He has been on an impressive run of knockouts with only the human wall Arthur Abraham able to go the 12 rounds with him in his last 7 fights.
But I’m not convinced about that – I feel Groves would have also stopped the likes of Tony Jeter and Tom Doran.
LN: So, after all that, how do you see the fight going?
TY: Both men have things in their favour and it looks to be a very close fight but I’d probably edge it in Groves’ favour.
Looking at the betting, Groves as the 11/8 outsider is definitely a bet for me.
He’s proven himself at the top level before and is the bigger man while I question if Eubank is quite as good as people think.
Groves had been making noises about stopping Eubank early, and I don’t think Eubank has ever been in with someone with Groves’ strength. So I’d say Groves to win in Rounds 1-6 at 5/1 is worthwhile too.
LN: Smashing stuff, indeed. Any other little titbits for us before you go?
TY: Well, it’s a strong undercard for this fight, so for interest throughout the evening, I’m placing a treble on Ryan Walsh (4/5), Jack Arnfield (6/4) and Arfan Iqbal (2/5) which works out at just over 5/1.
Click here for all our Groves v Eubank Jr. odds.
All Odds and Markets correct as of date of publication