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Froch-DeGale fight talks under way

Rob Bartlett
July 9, 2014 « Froch won't block my path to world title, says DeGale | Rashid's burst takes Yorkshire top »
James DeGale is mandatory challenger for Carl Froch's IBF world super-middleweight title © PA Photos
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Promoter Eddie Hearn has revealed talks are ongoing to arrange an all-British world title fight between WBA and IBF super-middleweight champion Carl Froch and mandatory challenger James DeGale.

"DeGale's back in the big time with plenty of swagger and now he's mandatory challenger for Froch's IBF world title," Hearn said. "He's keen for that one and on my case to deliver it. Talks are underway with Froch to try and make that happen this year."

Matthew Macklin joins Matchroom stable

Matt Macklin wants a world title shot © Getty Images
  • Matthew Macklin has teamed up with Matchroom and will kick off the new season at the National Stadium in Dublin on August 30.
  • Macklin lost out to Sergio Martinez, Gennady Golovkin and Felix Sturm in world middleweight title fights but is determined to get back into range of another crack at a World title. His opponent in Dublin is yet to be confirmed.
  • "It's been four years since I last boxed in the UK and five since I boxed in Ireland so I am really looking forward to boxing this side of the Atlantic again," said Macklin, who has been working with Lou DiBella in the United States.
  • "The National Stadium has always been a great traditional venue for Irish boxing and the atmosphere on August 30 will be electric."
  • Promoter Eddie Hearn added: "I have been looking at bringing a big show to Dublin for some time and I am delighted to start a new era there for Matchroom Boxing on August 30, headlined by Macklin.
  • "Matthew is a proven world-level fighter on the verge of another world title shot and I am delighted to also be working with our American partner Lou DiBella on making that happen."

Froch has been considering his next step since he knocked out George Groves for a second successive time in their Wembley Stadium rematch in May.

DeGale impressed on that undercard and stopped previously unbeaten Brandon Gonzales to put himself in the No.1 position for a shot at the IBF belt. Froch must fight his fellow Brit by the end of February or vacate the title.

However, it is believed Froch's preference remains a swansong fight in Las Vegas. Former WBC middleweight champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr has long been on the radar and is keen to fight Froch in America, while Mikkel Kessler has put his name forward, declaring his interest in a third, deciding bout against the champion.

A fight with Andre Ward, the only other man to inflict defeat on Froch, has been ruled out.

Hearn, though, remains confident he can deliver a world title shot for DeGale and has the 28-year-old pencilled in for an October 11 date at London's O2 Arena - be it against Froch or not.

"We've talked about three options for Froch with Chavez Jr, Kessler and DeGale, who is now mandatory challenger," Hearn said.

"Carl will have to face him before February and there's probably only going to be one opportunity to fight before then.

"That's a fight we're progressing with nicely and James is chomping at the bit to get in there."

On Froch, Hearn added: "He's ready to start talking about fighting again. He talks about his ambition to fight in Vegas and that's for real, but it's easier said than done.

"With James you've got a ready-made big domestic fight but, more than that, you've got a mandatory challenger. He's not just calling out for the fight and hoping he's the chosen one - he is the chosen one."

Hearn believes DeGale holds enough aces to disrupt Froch's dream of bowing out in Vegas. "As I've said to him [DeGale], he's got that big casino chip in his pocket now; the mandatory challenger position for Carl Froch; it's just a case of when it's cashed in."

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