PADDY Fitzpatrick believes justice has been restored for his boxer George Groves after the International Boxing Federation yesterday ordered a rematch against their super middleweight champion Carl Froch.
The decision caps a successful appeal by Swindon trainer Fitzpatrick and Groves, who took their case to the IBF in America, and installs the boxer as the mandatory challenger to Froch.
Groves’ defeat to Froch back in November sparked worldwide controversy because of referee Howard Foster’s premature stoppage. That, along with Foster’s actions on Facebook ‘liking’ a pre-fight comment suggesting Froch would win in round nine, formed part of Groves’ appeal.
Having helped formulate the appeal and present the case to the IBF in America, Fitzpatrick said he was delighted with the outcome.
“It’s great news and I am so pleased for George,” Fitzpatrick told the Advertiser. “It just shows that you cannot win a fight unless you get into a fight.
“Carl Froch must fight George Groves or vacate but what it does for George is that it allows him to be in a position to fight for a world title.”
Fitzpatrick revealed a polite and calm presentation to the IBF ultimately proved crucial, adding: “We didn’t go out there shouting and hollering and we didn’t find out until after the appeal that that is what they are used to people doing.
“We didn’t take that approach, we just presented our case politely. We had a DVD pointing out all the relevant actions from the fight. We had psychological reports from a top psychologist who is a regular in the high court and therefore would be respected and a name they would recognise.
“We didn’t say one thing about Carl Froch. It wasn’t about Carl Froch. You don’t remember a fight because of one boxer. You remember a fight because of two boxers. It was a great fight because of both men.
“We won’t ever know what was about to happen, nobody knows. It was a better fight than anyone expected but people were just left with a bitter taste in the mouth because of the way it finished.
“I never once said there was anything crooked about the fight. What I did say was about the unprofessional manner in which the fight was handled. “ Fitzpatrick also made light of suggestions Groves is obsessed with Froch, simply stating that the Nottingham boxer just happens to be standing in his way at this moment in time.
“George Groves is not infatuated with Carl Froch,” added Fitzpatrick. “George has always said he doesn’t want the easiest route to a world title, he just wants the quickest route to one.
“Froch just happened to be the guy in the last fight. George feels the fight was cut short and his chance to become world champion was stopped by a man in a tie. It’s therefore reasonable to expect George to want to show he was on his way to winning by having a rematch.
“He isn’t chasing Carl Froch for a pay day, he is chasing the rematch and Carl Froch just happens to be the opponent.
“We are not getting carried away with anything or thinking George is about to be world champion. But we now have the rematch which is what we went to the IBF to get.”
The Swindon trainer is now convinced the fight will happen but expects “fun and games” before the rematch is confirmed.
“I expect the fun and games to start now,” added Fitzpatrick. “I don’t expect Carl Froch will vacate. Can you imagine if he did that now the rematch has been ordered? Maybe the people in his street would be okay with that but I’m sure his many fans wouldn’t be.
“Eddie Hearn wants the fight, Sky want the fight, it’s only ever been Carl Froch who doesn’t want the fight.
“George can now sit down, relax and read the paperwork. Whether Carl Froch agrees to the fight or not, one thing is for sure George Groves will fight for a world title.”