The Writer’s Corner: Groves/Murray rescues PPV card of perilous mismatches
Boxing remains the prominent combat sport in the UK as 13 British world champions reign across nine weight divisions.
However, matchmaking is an ominous threat.
Anthony Joshua defends his IBF heavyweight crown against unknown American, Dominic Breazeale, June 25, at the O2 London.
Chris Eubank Jr, after battering Tony Jeter, bursting Gary O’Sullivan’s eardrum and punching Nick Blackwell into an induced coma, now faces Tom Doran on the undercard. Arguably Eubank’s two prior opponents are more proven than Doran.
Daenerys Targaryen’s destructive dragons vs. timid Slaver’s Bay soldiers, who battled in the latest Game of Thrones episode, are the sort of mismatches Saturday night will conjure.
Nobody gets hurt on the set of Game of Thrones; but a boxing ring is a sinister environment.
Thankfully, George Groves and Martin Murray are scheduled on the show in a fair contest. A permanent shadow will loom over the loser’s career; the winner will challenge for another world title.
Unless caught clean or stamina becomes problematic, George Groves will beat Martin Murray convincingly. But expect a compelling fight.
One sided bashings are frequent in boxing. Eventually desired encounters are created, such as Groves against Murray or Chris Eubank Jr against Gennady Golovkin, which is reportedly close to an agreement.
Eubank Jr has been feeding the news cycle with interviews on how he will defeat GGG. His immediate task is barely mentioned. But respect to Tom Doran for courageously accepting the challenge.
WBO middleweight champion, Billy Joe Saunders and WBA regular champion, Daniel Jacobs, were two boxers available to Chris Eubank Jr in recent months.
There comes a telling moment when a fighter becomes champion, or a combatant forces his way into a mandatory position, where their competition ought to get stronger.
Anthony Crolla is the prime British example. He retained his lightweight title against favourite Ismael Barrosa in his first defence, and Crolla will be unifying the WBA strip by fighting WBC champion Jorge Linares in September.
Boxing’s still a murky business managed mercilessly. Where money is to be made, safety is merely an afterthought.
Millions of pounds will be generated on Saturday night, but hopefully not to the detriment of a fighter’s health.
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