Groves and DeGale set for world title fights

George Groves and James DeGale are looking forward to challenging for world titles in 2015 after their respective wins in Liverpool at the weekend.

Hammersmith’s Groves stopped American Denis Douglin in the seventh round at the Echo Arena, where DeGale saw off former world title challenger Marco Antonio Periban of Mexico with an impressive third-round stoppage.

DeGale is the mandatory challenger for the IBF super-middleweight belt Carl Froch twice successfully defended against Groves.

Groves, meanwhile, has repositioned himself since those defeats and is the mandatory challenger for the WBC title currently held by Anthony Dirrell.

Champion Froch has indicated that he wants to fight in Las Vegas rather than face DeGale but could be tempted to meet the winner should Harlesden’s former Olympic champion take on Groves in a rematch.

Groves edged a close points decision when the two rivals met in May 2011.

“I have respect for Carl Froch’s achievements but he’s basically being a bit of a coward,” said DeGale.

“It’s simple; fight me or vacant the title. He needs to make up his mind. I’m ready.”

Groves is hoping to face Dirrell in London, having been knocked out by Froch in their rematch at Wembley in May.

“I let the fans down before but I won’t again – I’d love that fight to be in London,” Groves said.

“Either way, my focus is on fighting for that WBC belt. I’ve always said I want the quickest not the easiest route to a world title.”

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