23rd May 2011
James DeGale says he wants a rematch with George Groves after losing his British super-middleweight title to his rival on points, in a controversial majority decision in favor of the commonwealth belt holder, at the O2 Arena on Saturday night.
The judges scored the fight 115-115 a draw and 115-114 on the other two judges cards in favor of Groves. But opinion’s have been split and Groves (13-0, 10KOs) has stated, that he may now seek other opponents, having nothing else to prove, having beat DeGale twice, both amateur and pro.
But DeGale (10-1, 8KOs) is having none of it and together with his promoter Frank Warren have demanded that Groves gives him an immediate return fight, to settle the score in a rubber match.
Although amateur contests are not usually counted for, when comparing a fighters pro career. Their amateur meeting had been so widely publicised in there build-up, it is as much a part of their history and legacy as their professional clash
For DeGale, it was his first defeat as a professional, but believes that his more aggressive approach and his cleaner punching, compared to Groves tactics of boxing on the back foot, should have seen him retain his Lonsdale belt.
“How can you run on the back foot like that and nick the fight?” complained DeGale.
“I thought I was up a couple of rounds. I’m gutted. I thought there were a couple he nicked and I was getting frustrated but I thought I won the majority and was up.
“I just didn’t want to make a mistake, that’s all. I knew what he was doing, but I was a little bit surprised because I thought he’d come to fight. How can a challenger nick a fight on the back foot like that?
“I thought I hit him with the cleaner shots, I hurt him in the ninth round, and the last four rounds I won easy, he can’t be proud of that win.
“He beat me, but he nicked it. I want a rematch as soon as, but we’ll have to see what Frank and the Board do.” DeGale added.
Promoter of DeGale Frank Warren, also called for a return fight and has requested that the British Boxing Board of Control order an immediate rematch
One judge had the fight scored as a draw but the two other judges overruled that decision having both scored Groves ahead by one point. Warren, however, feels the scoring was wrong and is now demanding an immediate rematch.
“The general consensus seems to be that James won the fight, so they should order a rematch,” said the promoter. “I don’t think George’s team will be interested, but there’s no-one else for him. It should happen straight away.
“One way or another that fight will happen again. If it doesn’t happen, George Groves should be ashamed of himself.
“I haven’t found one person who thought George won that fight and I’m sure he’s got a lot of pride and he wouldn’t want it to be like that. I’m sure he wants his victory to be an emphatic one.”
Groves however hit back. “What is it, best of five? How many times do I have to beat this man? After this fight I want to move on to bigger and better things.”
James has no title, he is now coming off a loss, I’m pretty sure I can find a better opponent now than James DeGale!
“As you saw I displayed skill, determination, will to win, boxing ability and I beat James DeGale in every aspect. I’ve beaten him twice, what more do I need to do?
“But I always said after I’ve beaten James DeGale that’s the domestic scene cleared up and I’m looking for bigger and better things. Maybe that’s James, maybe it’s not.” added Groves.