Tag Archives: kessler

Tony Bellew v Isaac Chilemba rematch Carl Froch undercard May 25

Bellew to get second shot at Chilemba as rematch is arranged for Froch undercard

By
Martin Domin

PUBLISHED:

13:38 GMT, 8 April 2013

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UPDATED:

17:14 GMT, 8 April 2013

Tony Bellew's rematch with Isaac Chilemba will be held on May 25 at the O2 Arena on the undercard of Carl Froch's world title unification fight with Mikkel Kessler.

The Liverpool light heavyweight was devastated when the original meeting was scored a draw last month.

The winner of the second bout will earn a shot at the winner of WBC champion Chad Dawson's clash with Adonis Stevenson on June 8.

Gutted: Tony Bellew felt he deserved to win his first fight with Isaac Chilemba

Gutted: Tony Bellew felt he deserved to win his first fight with Isaac Chilemba

Promoter Eddie Hearn revealed both men were keen to have the rematch as soon as possible.

'There was no winner, so we need to find one,' he said.

'Many people thought Tony won, some thought Chilemba won. It's a fight both need to get off their back.'

Draw: Bellew took his foot off the gas after the opening rounds

Draw: Bellew took his foot off the gas after the opening rounds

The winner of the rematch will likely challenge for the world title in September.

Meanwhile, George Groves' opponent for the same night, along with further details of the undercard, will be announced this week.

George Groves beats Baker Barakat with second round TKO in Germany

Groves continues winning record by easily overcoming Barakat with second round TKO

, George Groves has now matched that tally in the last fortnight following his second-round stoppage victory over Baker Barakat in Germany.

The 24-year-old super middleweight beat Dario German Balmaceda at Wembley Arena two weeks ago and made light work of his Syrian opponent on the undercard of Robert Stieglitz's world title rematch with Arthur Abraham in Magdeburg.

On the attack: George Groves (right) lands a jab on Baker Barakat

On the attack: George Groves (right) lands a jab on Baker Barakat

Groves will target the winner of that clash later in the year after starring as chief support to Carl Froch's mouthwatering rematch with Mikkel Kessler on May 25.

The Londoner, who has now won all 18 of his professional contests, was on top from the first bell, peppering Barakat to the head and body before a left uppercut had the 32-year-old wobbling.

The bell came to his rescue on that occasion but a knockdown in the second session, followed by a further flurry of blows, forced the referee to step in.

Stopping him now: The referee steps in to prevent any further punishment

Stopping him now: The referee steps in to prevent any further punishment

Groves, who recently left Frank Warren to join rival promoter Eddie Hearn, immediately looked forward to a world title challenge.

'It was a good fight,' he said. 'He wasn't at the level I'm used to but I put in a good performance and didn't make any mistakes.

'I'm the No 1 contender with the WBO and was supposed to fight Stieglitz last year but I had to pull out through injury.'

Froch versus Kessler II set for O2 Arena on May 25… hours after Wembley"s Champions League final

Froch versus Kessler II set for O2 Arena on May 25… hours after Wembley's Champions League final

By
Martin Domin

PUBLISHED:

16:08 GMT, 1 February 2013

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UPDATED:

16:09 GMT, 1 February 2013

Carl Froch's rematch with Mikkel Kessler will be held at London's O2 Arena on May 25, just hours after the Champions League final at Wembley.

The Nottingham super middleweight will attempt to add Kessler's WBA title to his own IBF belt, and exact revenge for his 2010 defeat to the Dane.

The blockbuster is also set to herald Sky Sports' return to pay-per-view after a self-enforced two-year absence with Froch and Kessler expected to share a 4million purse.

Toe-to-toe: Froch's first fight with Kessler was a close thriller

Toe-to-toe: Froch's first fight with Kessler was a close thriller

The fight was announced last month following protracted negotiations and the 17,000 capacity O2 has seen off competition from the Manchester Arena to host the most eagerly-awaited fight in British boxing.

The first clash between the two, in the Super Six tournament, lives long in the memory as an epic 12-round war awarded to Kessler by unanimous decision.

Prime: The battle-hardened Froch is peaking as a fighter

Prime: The battle-hardened Froch is peaking as a fighter

Since then, the Dane has added a fifth world title to his impressive collection by beating Brian Magee in Denmark last December while Froch was devastatingly brilliant in his brutal demolition of previously unbeaten Lucian Bute in Nottingham last May to become a three-time world champion.

Carl Froch v Mikkel Kessler agreed for summer in England

This is one for the ages! Froch lands mega summer fight with rival Kessler in the UK

By
Riath Al-samarrai

PUBLISHED:

12:28 GMT, 15 January 2013

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UPDATED:

17:18 GMT, 15 January 2013

Carl Froch and Mikkel Kessler have agreed terms for a blockbuster summer rematch in the UK.

The date and venue have not yet been confirmed but the super middleweights are expected to clash on May 25 in London.

Froch suffered his first professional defeat and lost his WBC world title in their previous bout in April 2010, a contentious unanimous decision after a thriller in Denmark.

Scroll down for video

Home advantage: Carl Froch will get his chance to exact revenge over Mikkel Kessler in the UK this summer after losing to the Dane in 2010

Home advantage: Carl Froch will get his chance to exact revenge over Mikkel Kessler in the UK this summer after losing to the Dane in 2010

But after a run of fights against the best in the division, he has since picked up and defended the IBF belt, which will be staked in the rematch against the WBA (regular) champion.

‘This is the fight that I want more than anything in the world,’ said Froch.

‘I put Mikkel up there as one of the great warriors in boxing and I am so excited about this fight and the chance to set the record straight against him.’

‘I promised Carl we would meet again and here we are, getting ready to leave it all in the ring for a second time,’ said five-time world champion Kessler, who like Froch has only lost two fights.

Ready to rumble: Froch will be looking to celebrate what would be the biggest win of his career this summer with the support of girlfriend Rachael Cordingley

Ready to rumble: Froch will be looking to celebrate what would be the biggest win of his career this summer with the support of girlfriend Rachael Cordingley

‘I have the utmost of respect for Carl, I
feel we are very much alike. He is a great champion, a true warrior
that has fought the best opponents all over the world in some of the
most hostile places, just like me.

'Our first fight, especially the last round, showed what we are all about and I was to do it again.

‘Since that first fight, I have become even stronger. I am fresh, I am healthy and I am ready to defeat him once again. I dont care where we fight, I said anytime, anywhere. I plan to make my loyal Viking fans, as well as everybody else in Denmark, very proud once again. I am ready for war.’

Packing a punch: Froch was impressive in his comfortable victory over Yusaf Mack in his last ring outing

Packing a punch: Froch was impressive in his comfortable victory over Yusaf Mack in his last ring outing

Froch’s promoter Eddie Hearn added:
‘This is one for the ages. My hat goes off to both men for putting
everything on the line here in what can only be an epic battle. Too many
super fights fall by the wayside so to make Froch v Kessler II is a
dream come true.

‘Froch v Kessler I was a barnburner but I really feel Carl is a different fighter now, especially in the UK. These are the kinds of fights and nights that can cement the legacy of Carl Froch and no one deserves it more.

'We know what to expect from both men and either way it's going to be brutal.’

VIDEO Eddie Hearn is looking forward to the summer rematch

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Boxing review of 2012, by Jeff Powell, with Ricky Hatton, Manny Pacquiao and more

Jeff Powell's review of 2012, with Ricky Hatton, Manny Pacquiao and more

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UPDATED:

21:40 GMT, 24 December 2012

'Tis the season to put on a few pounds, let the stitches heal the wounds, to soothe the swollen hands, take the weight off the feet without every second counting… and confer the annual awards.

Anno Domni 2012 began with Muhammad Ali further defying Parkinson’s by reaching his landmark 70th birthday. It ended with Manny Pacquiao being knocked flat out of contention as pound-for-pound king by the anatomically reconstructed 39-year-old Juan Manuel Marquez.

Between those ring-posts, history was made…

BOXER OF THE YEAR

Sergio Martinez achieved, at last, the recognition and the world title of which he had been deprived for too long.

The Argentine matinee idol, having begun his year by knocking out our own Matthew Macklin, went on to beat Son of Chavez and thus overcome the boxing politics in which he had been unfairly entangled.

He did so with a master-class for 11 rounds of dazzling style against Julio Cesar Jnr, capped off by his courageous recovery from a 12th round knock-down. The classic middleweight division found its latest successor to Sugar Ray Robinson.

Champ: Sergio Martinez recovered from a late knockdown to claim victory over Julio Cesar Chavez Jr

Champ: Sergio Martinez recovered from a late knockdown to claim victory over Julio Cesar Chavez Jr

BRITISH BOXER OF THE YEAR

Carl Froch, the outstanding fighter of his UK generation, gritted his teeth to come back from last year.s disappointing Super Six Final defeat by the accomplished Andre Ward.

He did so in commanding fashion, putting an end to the fancied Lucien Bute's unbeaten record to regain a world super-middleweight title.

A similar stoppage blitzing of Yusaf Mack not only gave the Nottingham Cobra a rousing homecoming but served notice on Ward and Mikkel Kessler that he intends, in 2013, to avenge the only two defeats of his warrior career.

Pride of Britain: Carl Froch was back to his brilliant best in 2012, especially against Yusaf Mack

Pride of Britain: Carl Froch was back to his brilliant best in 2012, especially against Yusaf Mack

WOMAN BOXER OF THE YEAR

Nicola Adams took her indelible place in the record books by becoming the first female to win Olympic gold in the boxing ring.

The wee lass from Leeds lit up London 2012 with her sunshine smile and lifted the roof off the cacophonous ExCel Arena by decking Chinese legend Can Can Ren en route to winning her historic final.

FIGHT OF THE YEAR

Manny Pacquiao v Juan Manuel Marquez*.

The asterix is there because the veteran Mexican idol had turned to a self-confessed former Olympics steroid provider to build him up physically in his desperation to secure a result against the legendary PacMan at the fourth attempt.

Marquez consistently denied using drugs to turn himself into a mini Arnold Schwarzenagger. So while there is no boxer of the year accolade from me, there is no denying that the Las Vegas night in its own right, with both men floored before Marquez landed his Hail Mary punch as Pacquiao appeared to be on the point of sixth round victory, was the thriller of 2012.

A broken man: Juan Manuel Marquez finally got the better of his old foe Manny Pacquiao

A broken man: Juan Manuel Marquez finally got the better of his old foe Manny Pacquiao

TRAINER OF THE YEAR

Rob McCracken not only brought Froch back from the professional brink to a third world title but also guided Team GB’s boxers to a rich medal haul at London 2012.

The first part of that double act has set up Britain's top prize-fighter for block-busting world super-middleweight title re-matches against Kessler and Ward in the coming 12 months.

The second part delivered not only Olympic glory but increased funding for this country’s amateur boxers.

SWANSONG OF THE YEAR

Ricky Hatton returned to the stage of pain for one last hurrah… and hurrah it was even though he over-matched himself after more than three years' absence by taking on an immediate past world champion.

We still love you: Ricky Hatton gave his fans once last chance to see him action, but was defeated

We still love you: Ricky Hatton gave his fans once last chance to see him action, but was defeated

The Hitman paid the price in the form of a crippling blow to that part of his body rendered most vulnerable by his past life of hard-boozing, his liver.

But he was ahead on the score-cards at the time and remains dear to the hearts of his army of fans, a sell-out 20,000 of whom sang him out of the ring for the last time and into a future as a trainer and promoter.

The sound of bells ringing in the ears – rather than the church steeples at this time of year – has stopped for the moment, but the memories linger on. Happy Christmas.

Carl Froch and Mikkel Kessler set for unification bout worth 4m

Froch and Kessler set for mouth-watering unification bout with 4m prize pool

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UPDATED:

19:01 GMT, 20 December 2012

Carl Froch and Mikkel Kessler will share a staggering 4million pot when they clash for a second time in a mouthwatering unification showdown next year.

The bout is likely to take place at the O2 in London in May, although the Manchester Arena, which last month hosted Ricky Hatton's comeback fight, has not been ruled out.

And such is the scale of the fight, Sky Sports are expected to be convinced to return to pay-per-view for the first time in almost two years after David Haye's limp defeat to Wladimir Klitschko in Hamburg last summer.

Momentous: Carl Froch (left) will face Mikkel Kessler with a 4m pool

Momentous: Carl Froch (left) will face Mikkel Kessler with a 4m pool

Froch narrowly lost to Kessler in the Super Six tournament two years ago in Denmark and the 35-year-old has been desperate to avenge the defeat ever since.

The IBF super-middleweight world champion hopes victory over the Dane will set him up for another rematch with American star Andre Ward as he bids to put right the only two losses on his record.

Quids in: The fight is so big that Sky will return to pay-per-view

Quids in: The fight is so big that Sky will return to pay-per-view

Lucian Bute, who lost his world title to Froch in May, wants his own rematch but is prepared to step aside to allow his conqueror to face Kessler.

The Canadian will continue his comeback from the brutal defeat in Nottingham by having a warm-up fight in the meantime.

Kessler, 33, became a world champion for the fifth time earlier this month when he stopped Northern Ireland's Brian Magee on home soil and will put his WBA belt on the line against Froch.

Mikkel Kessler has Carl Froch in sights after Brian Magee win

Kessler has Froch in his sights after destroying Magee to win fifth world title

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UPDATED:

12:23 GMT, 9 December 2012

Northern Irishman Brian Magee's first
defence of his WBA super-middleweight title ended in heartbreak after he
was stopped in the third round by a clinical Mikkel Kessler in Herning,
Denmark.

Kessler knocked the wind out of his
opponent's sails in the second round with a right to the body that left
Magee visibly struggling and the Northern Irishman was given a standing
eight count after turning his back following another punch to the
stomach later in the round.

It was a matter of when, not if, the relentless Dane would stop the contest and Magee's bravery was ended with yet another body shot, forcing referee Luis Pabon to call a halt to proceedings after 24 seconds of round three.

Champion again: Mikkel Kessler shows off his belt after winning the WBA world title in Denmark

Champion again: Mikkel Kessler shows off his belt after winning the WBA world title in Denmark

Magee became the WBA's regular champion after Ward was promoted to super champion at 168lbs although he was a firm underdog after agreeing to go into Kessler's back yard.

Following a rather uneventful opening round, Kessler brought the crowd to their feet with a straight right to the body midway through the second that sent Magee to his knees.

The 37-year-old managed to beat the count and valiantly looked to take the attack to Kessler, who focused all of his attack to the waist of Magee.

He was in pain towards the end of the round and took a knee after turning his back following another body shot.

Magee was saved by the bell, but the minute recovery in between rounds was clearly not enough and his resistance was ended when Kessler sent yet another straight right to the weakened area to bring a premature end to the night.

Early night: Kessler made short work of Brian Magee who had no answer to the Dane's punishing shots

Early night: Kessler made short work of Brian Magee who had no answer to the Dane's punishing shots

Early night: Kessler made short work of Brian Magee who had no answer to the Dane's punishing shots

Kessler's routine win has already set tongues wagging about a potential rematch with IBF champion Carl Froch, who has made no secret of his desire for another bout with the 33-year-old after being beaten by a close points decision when the two met in April 2010 in a pulsating encounter.

Froch was a guest pundit for Sky Sports 1 and admitted the fighters' promoters have already been in discussions about a return bout next year, possibly in the United Kingdom.

'I think (a rematch) is already step one completed because they've had a productive conversation and it's looking promising that the fight can definitely happen in the spring or early summer in 2013,' he said.

'They'll be talking now in the couple of days following that.

Body blow: Kessler had Magee on the canvas early on before the referee called a halt to the one-sided fight

Body blow: Kessler had Magee on the canvas early on before the referee called a halt to the one-sided fight

Body blow: Kessler had Magee on the canvas early on before the referee called a halt to the one-sided fight

'The only sensible fight out there for the fans, for the television, for me and for Mikkel is the rematch.

'The first fight was a humdinger. Everybody loved it who watched it and to get the rematch everyone's going to get excited.'

The two are friends and Froch, who defeated veteran Magee in 2006, claimed he was the one to tell Kessler to focus his attack to the body.

'I said to him “if it's a quiet opening then have a look to his body”,' added the self-styled Cobra.

'Well done Mikkel, you took my advice well but if you come to the UK you'll be leaving that black belt with me.'

Mikkel Kessler promises to fight Carl Froch

Kessler promises to fight Froch 'any time, any place' as Cobra targets revenge mission

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UPDATED:

11:51 GMT, 20 November 2012

Mikkel Kessler has vowed to rip Carl Froch's world title away for a second time after the Cobra set his sights on a rematch with the Dane next summer.

The Nottingham super-middleweight brought an abrupt end to the challenge of American Yusaf Mack on Saturday to retain his IBF belt.

Froch now hopes to line up a mouth-watering triple header with Lucian Bute, Kessler and Andre Ward over the next 12 months.

On a mission: Carl Froch (right) crushed the challenge of Yusaf Mack

On a mission: Carl Froch (right) crushed the challenge of Yusaf Mack

The 35-year-old suffered his first professional defeat to Kessler in 2010 when he was dethroned as WBC champion in the Super Six tournament.

Kessler, 33, faces Brian Magee in December for the WBA title but will then turn his attentions to his old adversary.

'Don't you worry, Carl,' he said. 'I beat you once and I will beat you again. Enjoy your belt while you have it. And let me take care of business against Brian Magee first.

Remarch: Froch now wants to avenge his defeat to Mikkel Kessler (left)

Remarch: Froch now wants to avenge his defeat to Mikkel Kessler (left)

'Of course I am ready to fight you again, any time, any place, especially if Andre Ward is too scared to leave his backyard.

'That was a good win for you, congratulations. Keep it up and I am sure we will meet again.'

Carl Froch wants to fight Andre Ward or Mikkel Kessler

Lethal Froch turns attention to revenge over Kessler or Ward after leaving super-middleweight challenger Mack in a heap

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UPDATED:

15:31 GMT, 18 November 2012

Carl Froch quickly turned his attention to a 'career-defining' 2013 after seeing off American challenger Yusaf Mack with the minimum of fuss.

Froch took over-matched Philadelphian Mack out in three rounds with two stinging body shots in Nottingham as he successfully defended his IBF super-middleweight title for the first time.

Mack, who had moved down from light-heavyweight to challenge Froch, was a rare 'soft touch' on paper after Froch's incredible run of elite-level fights in recent years.

Easily done: Carl Froch (right) battered American Yusaf Mack last night

Easily done: Carl Froch (right) battered American Yusaf Mack last night

Sealed with a kiss: Froch and girlfriend Rachael Cordingley celebrate victory

Sealed with a kiss: Froch and girlfriend Rachael Cordingley celebrate victory

Milking the crowd: Carl Froch was in top form against Yusaf Mack

Milking the crowd: Carl Froch was in top form against Yusaf Mack

Now, though, the evergreen 35-year-old is keen to nail down his plans for next year.

He is contracted to give Lucian Bute a
rematch in Canada after battering the Romania-born former champion in
May to snatch the IBF title.

However, Bute's camp may still decide
they would rather leave the impressive Englishman well alone after the
beating he dished out last time.

That would enable Froch to make a
mandatory defence against Adonis Stevenson, whose presence in the mix
threatens to complicate his plans.

Regardless, Froch's promoter Eddie
Hearn hopes to stage an outdoor blockbuster next summer with his man
facing either Mikkel Kessler or Andre Ward – the only two men to have
beaten the Briton.

'I just can't see Bute's camp wanting
to take the fight after his own performance against Denis Grachev last
time and Carl's performance,' Hearn said.

Career defining: Froch (right) hopes to line up a battle with Mikkel Kessler, one of two fighters to have beaten the fighter

Career defining: Froch (right) hopes to line up a battle with Mikkel Kessler, one of two fighters to have beaten the fighter

More likely: Froch is more optimistic of getting revenge over Andre Ward

More likely: Froch is more optimistic of getting revenge over Andre Ward

'If we fight Bute then we need to ask
for an exception from the IBF and Adonis Stevenson will have to wait. Or
we could fight Stevenson.

'We also want to fight Kessler.
Meanwhile, the two top things trending on Twitter on Saturday night were
Carl Froch and Andre Ward because Ward tweeted saying “I quite fancy a
trip to the UK”.

'I think he'd come. I really do. I want to do a stadium fight with Carl Froch, an outdoor fight in the summer.'

Hearn added: 'But I also want to get a
fight in the meantime. I think the reality is Bute or Stevenson then
Kessler, Ward in 2013. They're the only fights that particularly
interest us.'

Froch said: 'Other than fighting here
at the arena the next best thing for me would be fighting at the City
Ground. That would be unbelievable.

'To be there in the middle of that
pitch fighting somebody like Mikkel Kessler or Andre Ward, I can only
try to imagine what it's going to be like. It would be phenomenal.

'For me it would be a career-defining
fight. I'd rather do that than go to Las Vegas, with all the lights and
the glitz. I'd rather be here in Nottingham, at the City Ground. That
would be “the one”.'

Froch has craved a rematch with Kessler ever since he lost a narrow points decision to the Dane in his own country in 2012.

On top: Froch put Mack on the deck several times

On top: Froch put Mack on the deck several times

Smelling blood: Froch was relentless

Smelling blood: Froch was relentless

However, he suspects the 'Viking Warrior' is keen to avoid him.

Froch said: 'I
speak to Kessler and have asked him about the fight and what he thinks
and he's umming and ahing, then he mentions a silly figure, money-wise.

'He gets paid well in Denmark to fight
mediocre fighters, so the last thing he wants to do is fight me,
especially after he was sitting ringside to watch what I did to Lucian
Bute.

'He's probably thinking “you know what, I enjoy life too much – life's too short to go through that again”.

'So unless he gets paid masses of money – silly money – he's probably not going to take the fight.

'I might be wrong.'

Brutal: A Froch attack leaves Mack on the ropes

Brutal: A Froch attack leaves Mack on the ropes

Calling it a day: The referee ends proceedings in Nottingham with Mack prostrate

Calling it a day: Referee Phil Edwards ends proceedings in Nottingham with Mack on the canvas

Show of power: Froch attacks once more

Show of power: Froch attacks once more

Home support: Froch was cheered on by a partisan crowd

Home support: Froch was cheered on by a partisan crowd

Carl Froch: I won"t take Yusaf Mack for granted

Froch insists he won't take Mack for granted despite having one eye on bigger challenges ahead against Bute, Kessler and Ward

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UPDATED:

16:25 GMT, 16 November 2012

Carl Froch is not worried about failing to live up to expectations in Nottingham on Saturday night, believing he has it in his armoury to produce another memorable occasion.

Froch enjoyed arguably the defining night of his career at the Capital FM Arena on May 27, destroying the previously unbeaten Lucian Bute inside five rounds to become the super-middleweight world champion for a third time.

The 35-year-old has gradually become a crowd favourite over the course of his career, and in stopping Bute to claim the IBF title he will defend against Yusaf Mack, he stood firmly in the spotlight.

Weigh in: Carl Froch (centre left) and Yusaf Mack (centre right) fight on Saturday night

Weigh in: Carl Froch (centre left) and Yusaf Mack (centre right) fight on Saturday night

Mack is not as feared an opponent as Bute was, though, and Froch enters this bout as the overwhelming favourite, with Mack carrying a record of 31-4-2, meaning that another explosive event may not be guaranteed.

'I'll just do what I do,' Froch said. 'The crowd are already turning up, we've got a packed arena and obviously, Lucian Bute is a different opponent. He was an unbeaten fighter and I was the underdog and I shocked the world that night.

'People know what to expect and I'm expecting a fantastic night.'

Froch takes great pride from having won a world title on three different occasions and has a resume that would be the envy of many a champion.

Over the last four years he has taken on a stellar cast of punchers, starting with Jean Pascal, going on to Jermain Taylor, Andre Dirrell, Mikkel Kessler, Arthur Abraham, Glen Johnson, Andre Ward and ending with Bute.

Brit of alright: The Nottingham Cobra destroyed Lucian Bute to win the IBF super-middleweight belt

Brit of alright: The Nottingham Cobra destroyed Lucian Bute to win the IBF super-middleweight belt

Kessler and Ward were the only ones to better him – the two losses of his 31-fight career – and rematches with the pair, as well as a second shot at Bute, are being eyed up for 2013.

Froch, though, knows none of that can be possible without beating Mack.

'I went through one of the biggest tournaments in the world, the Super Six, where I knew who I was fighting for the next five fights, so you've always got your eye on your next opponent,' he said.

'That said, you can't take someone like Yusaf Mack for granted. I am looking at the future, but that's nothing new for me.

'I was in the amateur game for many years, boxed at the top level and had a massive pedigree. I've been a professional for 10 years and nothing is going to faze me.

Boxers in boxers: Froch shows off his patriotic pants

Grand: Froch at the Albert Hall in Nottingham

Boxers in boxers: Froch shows off his patriotic pants at the grand Albert Hall in Nottingham

'I'm not going to be complacent or lackadaisical, to take my eye off Yusaf Mack. I know I've got a job to do and I know that job could be a difficult one tomorrow night.'

With his penchant for taking on such punishing fights, Froch is surprising many by getting better as he grows older.

Bouts against Kessler, Ward and Bute next year would no doubt be one of his toughest-ever assignments as well, but he is confident he has the body and the game to keep going.

'It's two fights a year, so that's not the end of the world, and I don't take many punches,' he said.
'I live cleanly between fights. It's how you abuse or treat your body between fights that determines your longevity. I'm a clean liver, a consummate professional, I don't eat rubbish food, I don't drink and I don't smoke.

Return of the Mack: The American does not possess a fearsome record but Froch is still wary of his opponent

Return of the Mack: The American does not possess a fearsome record but Froch is still wary of his opponent

'Physically I was a late developer and I feel like a young 35. I feel in my prime, at my peak and as long as I have the desire to train in the gym, there's no reason why I can't go on until I'm 39, 40 years old. I'm not saying I want to, but physically I think I'm going to be able to.'

For his part, Mack has had little to say this week, having earlier branded Froch as a 'fake Joe Calzaghe'.

The 32-year-old was muted when the two met on Tuesday, saying little more than: 'I am ready to rumble. I've been the underdog all my life. I am ready. I've been training hard. He says he is fit, but I am fitter and stronger.'