Boxing Update 06/03 – By Paul Ready #FrochGroves2


With the confirmation of Froch Groves 2 being hosted at Wembley on 31st May which could have up to 80,000 spectators viewing it.

It got me thinking what the largest audiences have been in boxing history, so I decided to do some digging:

The largest paying boxing audience in history was Julio Cesar Chavez vs Greg Haugen in Feb-1993 a reported 132,247 patrons crammed into the Estadio Ezteca, Mexico City, Mexico to witness Julio Cesar Chavez make his tenth defence of his WBC light welterweight title.

Haugen was floored in the opening seconds and was pounded through the fight before Hall of Fame referee Joe Cortez stopped the fight in round five.

The largest European crowd ever to watch a Boxing Match was Max Schmeling vs. Walter Neusel Aug-1938, Over 102.000 spectators were in attendance at Sandbahn Lokstedt, Hamburg, Germany.
Joe Schmeling won with a ninth round KO.

They are audiences that dwarf most football crowds, except Brazil v Uruguay July 16th 1950 which had “only” 199,854 people at the Maracanã, Rio de Janeiro.

Froch v Groves 2

I feel like a fat kid in a sweet shop with a fist full of sweaty pocket-money waiting to book my tickets for this fight.

We were all finally put out of our misery on Tuesday this week at 10am with the announcement that Froch v Groves 2 will be hosted at Wembley.

This is a great choice and really THE place to host it.

The atmosphere will be electric and there will be countless column inches dissecting this fight in the coming months.

I have a feeling I will be telling my grandchildren about being at this fight in the future, I just hope we have some massive fights on the undercard to complement it.

I still back Groves to win this; he is too fast and will dominant the jab exchanges.  I will be amazed if this fight goes beyond the 9 rounds we saw in the predecessor last November.

Froch will be looking to blast Groves away in similar fashion to what he did against Lucien Bute; I’m certain the 25 yr old will be mindful of that.

I feel that the only way the 36 yr old will win is by a stoppage as he will struggle to out-box Saint GG.

The first press conference where both fighters will be head to head is next week, which will no doubt be a powder keg.

Will Froch turn up with some hair regrowth treatment for Groves?

Will Groves mock Froch’s nose in some capacity, maybe present him with a Gonzo teddy from Sesame Street?

The war of words that will ensue on the Media Tour will be almost as good as the fight; animosity between fighters really makes it an even bigger build-up.

Bring it on!

Man of Steel, Glasgow

Anthony Joshua put in his best performance so far against Hector Aviva on Saturday night.

Not because he blasted him away in the first round, not because Aviva has been 9 rounds with Dereck Chisora under a year ago.

But because it was his most patient performance to date.

What impressed me the most was how quickly he assumed control of the centre of the ring and got behind his jab before he stopped the Argentinean.

Joshua has been critical of his performance to date and has had some question marks raised against his mobility around the ring.
But this certainly was one that show-cased not only his obvious power, which is glaring to see, but his boxing ability too.

We are forever hearing that Joshua needs to be “stepped-up”, but certainly on the Manchester card which is 19th April, Richard Towers would be good opposition and the Froch v Groves 2 undercard, I would like to see him in with Michael Sprott or Sam Sexton.

A seasoned British veteran like a Sprott or Sexton has been mooted but American Kevin Johnson would be an equally good test too.

Ricky Burns was outclassed as the headliner of Man of Steel against Terence Crawford, losing his WBO Lightweight belt in the process.

Burns fell short against a very impressive Crawford who answered many questions of how good he actually is.

The Scot told Skysports:

“It was a tricky fight in there,” he said. “Very awkward, especially with the switch-hitting. I found it hard to get my shots off.

“The best man won on the night but I’ll be back. First thing I said to Eddie (Hearn, promoter) after the fight was ‘we’ll be chasing for a rematch’. Hopefully, we can get that sorted.

“I took a good body shot in one of the rounds but I managed to recover and I also took a head shot. I have proved I can take it.

“I said beforehand the jaw (which he broke against Joey Beltran in his last fight) might be in the back of my mind but I went out and got on with it, and the better man won on the night.

“He boxed well, good on him. You can see why he’s being touted as the next big thing in America.

“There are some big fights out there here for me as well, but my first choice would be to get a rematch.

“I feel I belong at world level, I think I proved that tonight.

“The weight division is buzzing, at world level, and over here, so there are big fights out there. I’ll be back in the gym in a couple of weeks, raring to go.”

I feel Rickster should avoid a rematch against Crawford as it will only end the same way. A rematch against Raymund Beltran or perhaps facing IBF Champion Miguel Vazquez would be a better option.

The 30 yr old does have perhaps one more title shot in his locker before stepping in to the blender of the British Lightweight scene.

Which moves us on aptly to my next subject; Anthony Crolla v John Murray.

Crolla v Murray

Anthony Crolla and John Murray have agreed to fight in Manchester on April 19th in a huge local derby.

Murray, previously trained by Joe Gallagher (who trains Crolla), adds some further Cayenne Pepper to the occasion.

One is a Man Utd fan, the other a Man City fan; there is a clear mutual respect between both fighters but that will go out the window once they step through those ropes.

It will be a huge fight for both men as they look to progress to a world title fight in the summer.

Happier days at Gallaghers Gym for Murray & Crolla





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