Photo: Laurence Lustig
IBF super middleweight champion Carl “The Cobra” Froch (29-2, 21 KOs) has warned challenger Yusaf Mack (31-4, 17 KOs) that he will pay for his pre-fight jibes when the pair meet Saturday, headlining the “True Brit” pay-per-view event (in the U.S.), live from Nottingham, United Kingdom. Mack appeared live on Ringside after the first press conference for the clash and called Froch, “a fake Joe Calzaghe.” The pair came face-to-face again at yesterday’s press conference at the Capital FM Arena, and “The Cobra” told the challenger that he will “face his wrath” in his ninth consecutive World title fight.
“I was just letting him know that he said too much when my back was turned and it might be inside his mind that I’m a bit wound up,” said Froch, a huge 1-18 favorite to retain the title and 1-4 to do so inside the distance. “I just wanted him to know he talked a load of rubbish on Ringside about Joe Calzaghe, but he probably spoke without thinking, so I put him right on that.
“I have to put on a good performance, be strong, sharp and confident, put my work together and put educated pressure on him because he could be dangerous. He’s not a big and tall light heavyweight, so he could be better at super middleweight. I’m not taking anything for granted and I am making sure that I do my work right and that will be enough to defend my title in style.”
Mack is a big 15-1 underdog to claim Froch’s IBF crown but the Philadelphian is confident that he has “The Cobra” rattled and he will be able to use that to shock the world.
“I got under his skin with the Calzaghe comment and I hope that’s to my advantage on the night,” Mack added. “On Saturday, I’m going to prove that I’m ready for this fight. I’ve lived in the gym and I’ve given myself the chance to show that I am the fighter I can be. I really believe I’m going to be taking the belt home.
“I haven’t come to fight the crowd. I’ll block them out on Saturday and I have nothing to prove to them. Froch has the pressure to impress them, not me; he’s said he’s going to knock me out so the pressure is on him to do that. When I’m still standing there after the sixth round, when people think I’m going to tire, what’s he going to do? I don’t fade and he can’t beat me.”
World-rated light heavyweight Tony Bellew (18-1, 12 KOs) takes on South American champion Roberto Bolonti (30-1, 19 KOs) in the 12-round co-feature for the vacant World Boxing Council (WBC) Silver Championship, which is also an official WBC eliminator to become champion “Bad” Chad Dawson’s mandatory challenger.
Bellew, rated No. 10 by The Ring Magazine, has lost only once as a professional, last year in his only World title challenge fight to undefeated WBO champion Nathan Cleverly in a hotly-contested 12-round majority decision.
Bolonti, who is rated No. 5 by the WBC, as well as No. 10 by the World Boxing Association (WBA) and IBF, is shooting for his 27th consecutive victory, fighting for the first time outside of his native Buenos Aires, Argentina.
The PPV card will also showcase some of Britain’s top, young fighters, including bantamweight prospect Khalid “Kal” Yafai (3-0, 2 KOs), a 2008 Great Britain Olympian, vs. Pro Antonio Nettunio (7-5), lightweight Scott “Scotty” Cardle (5-0, 1 KO) vs. Joe Elfidh (7-2) and, time permitting, highlights from other undercard bouts. All fights and fighters are subject to change.
“True Brit,” presented by Matchroom Boxing, will be distributed in the United States by Integrated Sports Media for live viewing at 3:00 PM/ET – 12:00 PM/PT on both cable and satellite pay-per-view via iN Demand, DIRECTV, DISH Network and Avail-TVN for a suggested retail price of $29.95.
“True Brit” will also be available to view via Fight Now TV, America’s only 24-hour combat sports and entertainment channel, on Cablevision channel 464 as part of the iO Gold package, as well as online at: http://www.gfl.tv/Events/Fight/Boxing/True_Brit_Froch_vs_Mack/1722.