• Carl Froch v Yusaf Mack

Froch ready for 'different' Mack challenge

ESPN staff
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Carl Froch faces Yusaf Mack next but has one eye firmly fixed on his rematch with Lucian Bute © PA Photos
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Carl Froch is looking forward to the first defence of his IBF super-middleweight belt against Yusaf Mack after confirmation he would face the American, but has one eye firmly fixed on his rematch with Lucian Bute.

Froch will step into the ring with Mack, who has most recently been fighting at light-heavyweight, in Nottingham on November 17.

"It's very exciting. Yusaf Mack's a very big strong guy. I didn't realise he was ranked number four, I think he may have just dropped to sixth in the world, so he is a top world-ranking opponent," Froch told Sky Sports News.

"He's actually a light-heavyweight so he's going to be big and strong, and provide a different kind of test for me."

Froch knows he will be in for a tough test, but also issued a warning to the 32-year-old.

"I know it's not going to be easy against anybody ranked in the top ten. But you have to remember Yusaf Mack is fighting Carl Froch, so he's going to turn up 25% better than when he fights anybody else," said Froch.

"He's got to come to my backyard but it's his world title fight. He has to make sure he's in the best possible shape and turn up and give a career best performance. He's fighting for his life so I have to make sure I prepare meticulously to get myself in the same shape I was when I challenged Lucian Bute for the world title."

Speaking about Bute, who faces Denis Grachev in a light-heavyweight bout in November, Froch said his rematch with the man from whom he took the IBF belt is still on course for early next year and that it could be at light-heavyweight.

"Maybe March, maybe April," said Froch. "If that fight is going to happen it's going to be early next year, and I have to honour the agreement and go over to his backyard in Canada and fight him for the rematch. I didn't think he'd want it immediately, so we're both having interim fights. We both have tough fights at light-heavyweight, so you never know we might meet at light-heavyweight.

"I can't see myself stepping up to light-heavyweight in the near future because I do super-middleweight so easily, but if he talks about doing it at a catch-weight then you never know, that fight may be made a bit higher. I'm ready for him whatever he brings. I'm looking forward to it and I hope it happens, it's a massive fight."

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