Groves (left) with the Boss, Heavyweight champion David Haye

George Groves was waiting for the postman on Monday morning, to deliver him a promised letter from Frank Warren, with an offer in writing to fight WBA super middleweight international champion James DeGale on December 11th.

.
The letter arrived! but, with the conditions that it was accepted within 48 hours, the apparently sizable offer was marked ‘return to sender’ and countered back at Warren by Adam Booth, offering DeGale a more substantial one to feature the fight instead,on a December Hayemaker Boxing show! The plot thickens!
.
James DeGale

DeGale, 24, who Groves has re-nicknamed ‘James Destined to Fail’ in retaliation to DeGales recent insults at him, is unbeaten in eight fights since turning pro, while the 22-year-old Groves has won all 10 of his bouts, and their paths are again destined to cross in a boxing rivalry that has been rife since the amateur days, when Groves beat DeGale five years ago on route to his ABA title win.

.
So with the ball back in Warren and DeGale’s court, does ‘Saint’ George Groves, who is in training at the moment for his fight on October 30th at the York Hall in Bethnal Green, in a defence of his Commonwealth Super-middleweight crown, (opponent TBC) – believe that a fight with DeGale is ready to happen?

 www.britishboxers.co.uk caught up with him to get his version of events.

.
“We have said from day one that we are keen on the fight and we want it to happen. Frank Warren sent us a generous offer and we have in-turn made them a better offer, a substantially better offer, but as yet I haven’t heard anything back.” said Groves.
.
“If we make an offer we mean it. It is a serious offer, it is substantially more, therefore the only thing I can see them doing is excepting it, or if they are going to come back and offer me more, then I don’t mind either.” Groves added.
.
In a planned boxing scenario, this fight between two of British boxing’s bright stars, would be taking place in a couple of years, with a world title on the line, but with both ready to step up to the challenge, Grove believes that he is going to be world champion regardless, so doesn’t mind getting in with DeGale now as appose to building the fight up over time.

“You can look at it either way, example Haye and Maccarinelli built up there fight over time and when they eventually got it on, David had captured two world titles and it became a massive event.”
.
“But  that isnt going to happen with me and ‘Destined to Fail’, we are in a hot division, both with just 10 and 8 fights, novices respectfully, I know where I’m going, I know someday I’m going to be world champion and I hope it is sooner rather than later, but its a fight I’m quite happy to have now.” said Groves.
.
“He is not a marquee name, its not like after I beat him I’m going to be able to retire as an Hall of fame fighter or even necessary go on to fight for a world title. At the moment I feel he needs me more than I need him.”
.

Groves with manager Adam Booth

“Hes sitting there after his fight on a PPV event. calling me out aggressively like that on TV. And saying that hes the golden ticket for these guys, these guys are living off his name and need him, well why is he calling me out then? It doesn’t make sense! says Groves.


“But I think the reason he is calling me out is because he needs me! I’m the champion, I’m the main event fighter, Ive got my own Sky dates, I sell tickets, he doesn’t! I think they are thinking, we are having a show in London, so lets get Grovesy on, he sells tickets, so lets make this fight happen it will make financial sense. That’s the reason they have come after me.”

The bad blood is certainly not a publicity stunt to promote this fight, this argument has been going on since the pair last met as amateurs, when the fight was for bragging rights, with no money reward for either.
.
Groves when asked if the boxing drama they are creating, is all part and parcel of the pro ranks and if ever they met personally, things would be amicable? Groves didn’t hold back.

“I genuinely cant stand him, you know boxing people are usually the nicest people in the world, I couldn’t tell you anyone in boxing who I don’t like except him ‘Destined to Fail DeGale’,” said Groves.

“Since we became rivals in the amateurs, hostilities have built up, even though I haven’t really seen him for God knows how long, it as just been there to manifest, but that’s fine by me, because when this fight comes about, you know, its going to be a real fight, I’m here I mean business. I’m not a little kid now at fifteen and him seventeen, sparring as amateurs.” said Groves.
.
Groves has a defense of his commonwealth title to make first and will be headlining live on Sky Sports, the fight will be the fourth outing this year for the ‘Saint ‘and will mark a welcome return to London for the Hammersmith man and his fans following trips to Manchester and Las Vegas for his last two fights.
.
“It’s really exciting, it’s going to be a great show, and I’m really looking forward to getting back in action in London where everyone can come and see me box. They don’t have to travel like for my last fight where a few people had to travel all the way to America to see me box”, enthused Groves.

Groves with his commonwealth belt

Q&A. In the Ring with George Groves 

 .
George tell us about your fighting in America recently? 
Yeah it was great to get out there and rub shoulders with some great fighters, I hope to fight there more, alot of the best world super middleweights are there. Id like to fight for the world title and may have to there, so if  I can get the experience early on, it will stand me in good stead in the future.
.

It is a different mindset out there a different boxing world really and the experience was great, not only getting a quality opponent who was gonna bring me on, but to be involved with the press the weigh ins in the changing rooms, even they are different, the arenas, its just different. You go around the world and think they would be the same but there not. As a fighter things can change your rhythm and its about getting used to it.
.

Signing with Hayemaker do you feel they can help you accomplish your ambitions?
Yeah they are becoming a main player a power in boxing and having a good relationship with Golden Boy, major promoters in the States, they are really keen on me, they see my talent and they believe I can go all the way and have put in place a kind of provisional agreement and want to get me out there twice a year boxing on their cards, they have shows week in week out, so if anything comes up and Ive got a gap in the diary then I’ve got the option of going over there

.
When and how did you get into boxing?
I was just energetic as a kid and into all sports, my dad said why don’t you try boxing, because he is a boxing fan. So he took me down Dale Youth boxing gym when I was 7. They told me that I was too young, so I started kick boxing up to the age of 13, but when I was 10 went back to the boxing gym and boxed at 11.
.
Who was your first trainer?
Mickey Delaney and Peter Carson at Dale Youth
.
How would you describe your fight style?
Forward pressure box fighter
.
Nigel Benn

Who influenced you as a young boxer?

My dad was a big fan of Nigel Benn and that rubbed off on me, I admired his his courage, heart and skill, he was an inspiration to me.
.
Toughest/Best opponent you have faced?
Probably an exhibition bout against Luis Garcia, hes a pro now. It was in Cuba, I don’t know how he got down to the weight, 76 kilos or whatever it was, but hes a big lad and I went in there half asleep thinking it would just be like an hard spar, took a few shots and thought, id better wake up.
.
Toughest Part of being a boxer?
Making weight, giving up sugar basically! Sugars a killer for me
.
Who do you wish you had fought or want to fight?
James DeGale, lets keep it fresh!
.

Who is the greatest British Boxer of all time?
Nigel Benn 
.
Best fight you have seen?
McClellan vs Benn, my Dad told me it would be a good one 
.
.
Dream Fight? Who v Who?
Sugar Ray Leonard vs Sugar Ray Robinson – I never seen alot of there fights until I started training with Adam (Booth) but he has shown me the fights, he is a big Ray Leonard fan.
.
Childhood Hero?
Sylvester Stallone, I loved all the Rocky films.
.
Favorite all time boxer, World and British?
World: McClellan – British: Benn. Ive watched a lot of  McClellan’s fights lately and it was a shame how he finished up, because he was everything I love in a fighter, he wasn’t afraid to throw his hands and had amazing power.
.
David Haye

Favourite British fighter at the moment?
David Haye (right) – I mean hes my boss and I see him all the time, but his crossover appeal, the way he deals with the fans, hes a celebrity now but as always got time for people. You see him on telly and he is always in good humour and he is bringing a new audience into boxing, which is important to keep the sport fresh and interesting for the new audiences.

.
What do you do when you are not Boxing?
I love comedy actually, stand up comedy, so I try get to as many as I can – if not I’m sat there watching Paramount TV, Ha!
.
What would you do if you wasn’t a boxer?

Favorite place for an holiday

Stand up comedian! ha! no Id like to think I was that funny! I don’t know the buzz that you get from boxing is hard to match, I think Id have to be a rock star or something like that. I went to see Green Day this year and they rocked up on stage, with boxing I might get to fight twice a year or something, where them guys are doing it week in week out!

.
Which British Boxers should we look out for?
I think from amateurs just going pro, id have to say Ronnie Heffron, all the things I’m hearing from people is that this lad can fight. I like his style as well though he was never going to last too long in the amateurs. Hes not toey you know bouncing around, tall. Hes a come forward fighter, I think he said he is a Ricky Hatton fan and you can see that in his style. He is strong and if he can take that with him through the levels, I think he can go all the way.
.

Heffron in action 
.

.

Your Motivation?
To have a certain amount of respect from the boxing people and maybe being able to buy my Mum and Dad a nice house one day, things like that.
.
What would you change in Boxing?
More TV – If more TV came in for boxing we would have more well known fighters. If the terrestrial TV stations came in again that would be great. I think then fighters would be inclined to take more risks, their so scared of losing their ‘0’ You know you could get the fights on for the fights sake, if you get beat you haven’t gotta worry about getting pushed to the back of the line, with the backing there would be chances get back in the picture – British fighters would progress and challenge more on the world scene.
.
What music do you listen too?

BERLIN - OCTOBER 07:  Singer and guitarist Bil...

I like a bit of Punk Rock sort of thing – Green Day (right) is my favorite band, I like Fall out Boy’ too, stuff like that

.
Last book you read?
I’m half way through Frankie Boyle’s autobiography at the moment, a recommended read!
.
Favorite films?
I love Snatch and Lockstock, I can watch them any day of the week
.
Who would play you in a movie of your life?

NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 17:  Actor Ray Liotta att...

A young Ray Liotta (right)

.
Favorite Meal?
Out of training Spag. Boll. or Spaghetti Meatballs
.
Best Holiday destination?
Las Vegas, Ive been enough times now I love it out there
.
What other sports do you watch?
Athletics, Football, trying to get into Rugby – I like Tennis, anything that’s on really Il watch it
.
Best friends in Boxing?
All the Hayemaker guys, out of the pros Ashley Sexton is a good mate of mine and he as been training down our gym lately.
.
Brook on the desert island

Which 3 people would you be stranded on a Desert Island with?
My Mrs. Bear Grylls and probably Kelly Brook (right) as well.. cause I saw her in a film trapped on a desert Island so she might have a bit of experience as well, so yeah her,  just for the experience!

.
Tell us something we don’t know about you?
Up to the age of three I had long curly blond hair down to my shoulders, then my Dad took me to get it cut at the barbers and it came back with a red tint, which everyone let me know about until the age of sixteen, and recently someone else as been calling me Ginger as well so! (referring to DeGales references to him as ‘that ugly ginger kid’)
.
Quick Fire Questions:
.
Red or Blue?
Chelsea Blue
.
Marvin Hagler or Sugar Ray Leonard?
Leonard
.
Benn or Eubank?
Benn
.
Haye or Lennox?
Haye
.
Pacquiao or Mayweather?
Pacquiao
.
Jab or Hook?
Jab
.
Head or Body?
Head
.
European or British Title?
European title
.
Country?
England
.
City?
London
.
Drink?
Fanta Zero
.
Animal?
Chipmunk
.
.
One thing you cant live without?
My ipod
.
Favourite Quote?
Everything happens for a reason!
.
What does the future hold for you?
If I don’t become a world champion Pay Per view fighter then I’ve let myself down

.

.

.

‘Saint’ George Groves will return to action on October 30th at London’s historic York Hall in Bethnal Green in a defence of his Commonwealth Super-middleweight crown. For tickets, call 07593751302. To purchase an Official George Groves T-shirt ahead of the 30th. go to his website www.georgegroves.com

Interview by Chris Maylett