Chris Eubank Jr and George Groves finally go head-to-head in the World Boxing Super Series semi-final tonight. The three judges all scored the fight in favour of Groves, scoring it 117 points to 112, 116 to 112 and 115 to 113.
It didn't stop his enthusiasm but Eubank Jr's accuracy continued to suffer, and "The Saint" responding with wide hooks with left and right both hitting the target.
Groves, who has added Eubank Jr's IBO title to his WBA belt, appeared to be suffering with a shoulder injury at the end of the fight, which could hamper his preparations for the June final of the World Boxing Super Series, where he will face either Callum Smith or Jurgen Brahmer.
Groves was also bigger physically, as Eubank only moved up from middleweight a year ago.
"He didn't lie when he said he would grit it out", Groves told ITV Box Office. I didn't get hit clean. "It was about who wanted it most I think and I obviously wanted it most". The better man won, but credit to Junior for getting through the match because I hurt him a lot.
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Eubank came out swinging wildly in the third round, but got the worst of his first serious offensive of the fight as he was left with a nasty cut above his right eye following an accidental clash of heads. George ain't ready, I can see it in his eyes. "I dropped him at least once but it didn't count, which was dubious". "I believe he will win the early rounds, a few rocky moments later on, but in the end, he will win on points". "I entered this tournament to win it".
Groves showed his class, befuddling Eubank Jr. behind boxing at a smart distance and counterpunching throughout the majority of the bout.
Eubank Jr had hoped this much anticipated domestic contest would elevate him out of his famous father Chris Eubank's shadow but Groves, the naturally bigger fighter, proved to be too shrewd having previously fought the likes of Carl Froch and Badou Jack.
Groves then showed his strength by flipping Eubank Jr nearly through the ropes - the ugly inside exchanges were not concerning him.