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Froch preparing for Mack, not Bute

ESPN staff
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Carl Froch refuses to think about a rematch with Lucien Bute until after his bout with Yusaf Mack © PA Photos
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Carl Froch is refusing to make plans for a rematch with Lucien Bute before he has defended his IBF super-middleweight title against Yusaf Mack in Nottingham on November 17.

Bute called for a rematch "as soon as possible" after Froch upset the odds to beat the Canadian in Nottingham in May, with a date expected to be set for next year.

But Froch is adamant that he must remain focused on beating Mack, who is boxing at super-middleweight for the first time in five years but ranked sixth in the world and arrives in the ring with 31 wins, four defeats and two draws to his name.

"It'd be very unprofessional for me to think that Yusaf Mack's a walkover," Froch told Sky Sports News. "He's only lost against the best in the world - he lost to Tavoris Cloud [last year], and that was for the IBF light-heavyweight title.

"I've had a look at that fight a couple of times, and for the first five or six rounds he was winning the fight, but he got caught with a shot, like most fighters do - if Mike Tyson can get knocked out, anybody can get knocked out - and lost the fight.

"He's now coming down to super-middleweight, and this is an opportunity for him to really make a name for himself. However you've seen him in the past, he's going to be 20 per cent better. I need to take him very, very seriously."

Unlike his bout with Bute, Froch will head back to the Capital FM Arena as the favourite going into the ring, and while he is taking nothing for granted remains confident that he can deliver another victory in his home town.

"If I start thinking this is an easy fight, this is a walkover, before you know it I'm in a hard fight, potentially I could get beaten. I'm taking this fight 100% seriously, as I know he is.

"I've got the tools, I've got the credentials, and I've got home town advantage - I've got everything you consider to be an advantage, and I'm very confident. I'm at the peak of my physical shape - at 35-years-old I feel fitter and stronger than when I was 25.

"I'm looking forward to doing the business and retaining my IBF world title, and then we've maybe got the rematch in Montreal with Lucien Bute, which again is going to be a totally different fight."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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