Exclusive: Chris Eubank Jr on his fight with George Groves and aiming to bring the WBA super-middleweight belt back to Brighton

Chris Eubank Jr is a week shy from the biggest fight of his career as he attempts to become a unified super-middleweight world champion against a domestic rival.

Friday, 9th February 2018, 7:30 am
Updated Friday, 8th June 2018, 6:42 am
Chris Eubank Jr in the ring. Picture by Sebastian Heger for World Boxing Super Series

The Brighton and Hove star takes on WBA super-middleweight champion George Groves at the Manchester Arena on February 17, live on ITV Box Office, with the winner not only becoming a unified champion but also advancing into the final of the World Boxing Super Series.

Eubank Jr said the showdown has everything you could want in a superfight, believing their styles will never make for an underwhelming fight.

He said: “This is a fight that the public have been demanding for years now, between me and George. It’s a grudge match and we are legitimate rivals.

Chris Eubank Jr pictured in his NEXTGEN clothing. Picture by @jonoblackham

“It’s going to be explosive, it’s going to be no holds barred, exciting, fanatic and everything you could want in a superfight.

“I know that because of our styles, we are both exciting and offensive fighters we like to throw our hands, we are not afraid to get into a brawl and get stuck in.

“I believe I have every advantage possible over George Groves coming into this fight, mentally, physically, spiritually, every aspect of boxing I believe I can outperform him.”

Eubank Jr, who lives and trains out of the city his dad represented so famously, regards the seaside city as ‘home’ and values the fanbase he has created within his hometown.

Chris Eubank Jr. Picture by @jonoblackham

He said: “Brighton has been where I have pretty much been my entire life. I trained here, lived here, grew up here, this is home to me.

“I have a large fan base in Brighton, it’s nationwide really. It’s definitely a good thing to have such a large support here in my own city.

“I’ll go on runs down the beach and I will have cyclists follow me, kids chasing after me and people stopping me for autographs and stuff like that.

“Obviously I can’t stop because I'm in the middle of a run but outside of that when I am out and about in the town I always give people my time and it’s great to have their support.”

Eubank Jr praised the Brighton and Hove Boxing Team for all they did for not only him, but every young boxer that steps foot into the club.

He said: “These guys have been there not just for me but countless amounts of kids who come down there and they take them through to their first amateur fight, some of them even turn pro here.

“It's a great set-up here and they offer so much to the community of Brighton and Hove and I definitely appreciate everything they did for me as a kid.”

Eubank Jr represented the Brighton and Hove club on 16 occasions, winning the 2011 Haringey Box Cup on his way.

His former amateur coach, Anthony Brown, still works with him to this day, alongside his father's former trainer, Ronnie Davies, who Eubank Jr labels as ‘invaluable’.

“Ronnie is the man who has been with me every day since I really started here in Brighton.

“He’s always been the one to guide me, to set everything up, to take me where I need to go. He’s an invaluable member of the team Ronnie Davies.”

However, the 28-year-old did not begin his boxing career in his beloved home of Brighton, the future world champion began his craft in Las Vegas, Nevada, at the youthful age of just 15.

He said: “Starting in Vegas is where I began my journey, Vegas is where I learned to become a warrior. Being thrown into the deep end as a kid sparring world class fighters, world champions, top professionals and this was before I even had my first amateur fight.

“It was do or die, I was sent out there to see if I could make it through the fire pit and I made it."

Eubank Jr enters the fight with George Groves as a close betting favourite, with much of the public seeing it as a 50/50 fight, something he is surprisingly happy about.

He said: “It’s not a 50/50 fight but I’m happy that a lot of the general public believe that it is a 50/50 fight because it makes the occasion much more exciting.

“I like the fact that people genuinely believe that I can’t win, because when I do do it, and I stop this guy and take his belt and bring it back to Brighton it makes the achievement all the more amazing.”

If Eubank Jr is successful in beating Groves and prevails in winning the WBSS, he will find himself in a prime position to challenge the best in the world, however he is not looking past the task in hand.

He said: “I have a final to win after the fight, against either Jurgen Bramer or Callum Smith so my immediate focus will be to win that fight.

“After that who knows, there’s some great great fights to be made in the super-middleweight and middleweight division.”

The Super-middleweight champion has stressed how important the element of a set schedule was to in his decision to take part in the tournament: “It’s one of the main reasons why this tournament appealed to me so much, it’s a set schedule of confirmed fights. There is no doubt that you will be fighting again in three four months and I’ve never had that before.

“Throughout my career I would be sitting at home and it’s always been do you want to fight on this date, and especially early on in my career that date was maybe three weeks away which is not ideal.

“Mentally and physically you want to be able to prepare for these fights, you don't want things sprung on you, which I have had many times so having a set schedule was very appealing to me.”

Last year was undoubtedly the most successful of Eubank Jr's career, picking up an IBO world title along with two other victories.

However the biggest fight he was a part of did not see him compete, he was part of Team Mayweather for the blockbuster showdown between Floyd Mayweather and Conor McGregor in August of 2017.

Eubank Jr said being a part of the event was a ‘great experience’ and something every fighter wishes to be a part of.

The super-middleweight champion has recently explored other avenues outside of boxing, launching his NEXTGEN apparel line.

“For years now my fans have been asking to be a part of my journey even more so than they already are, it was time to give the fans what they were asking for.

“People want to wear the clothes that I wear and train how I train so this NEXTGEN apparel gives the fans or anybody who is in to training the chance to do that.”

The apparel is mainly sport based and is designed for speed, power and comfort and is available online at chriseubankjr.com and on sale at the Manchester Arena on fight night. Limited NEXTGEN merchandise will be available at the Manchester MEN Arena so keep your eyes pealed if you’re up there.

Find Chris Eubank Jr on his social media: Twitter: @ChrisEubankJr Instagram: ChrisEubankJr, Snapchat: ChrisEubankJr

Red Monkey Collective is Chris Eubank Jr's new agency and will look after all aspects outside of the ring, as well as brand NEXTGEN. For any enquires please reach out to contact chriseubankjr.com