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22nd Feb 2018

Fight fans are loving what George Groves did with the IBO title after beating Chris Eubank Jr

Not bothered

Darragh Murphy

Most fighters dream of the chance to win a world title.

Even the less coveted belts are a big deal to a lot of competitors but George Groves seemingly wasn’t all that bothered when it came to the IBO super-middleweight title that he relieved Chris Eubank Jr of last weekend.

Groves successfully defended his WBA (Super) super-middleweight title by outclassing Eubank Jr in their World Boxing Super Series semi-final on Saturday night and became the rightful owner of the IBO strap which Eubank Jr had held for over a year.

But ‘Saint George’ didn’t want to fork over the sanctioning fees that the International Boxing Organisation requires its title-holders to pay and thus vacated the belt.

Curious fight fans noticed that Groves had not officially been named the IBO champ on the governing body’s official website while BoxRec listed Groves’ WBA title as the only championship which was on the line in the Eubank Jr fight.

IBO President Ed Levine responded to his followers’ questions about the division’s status by confirming that they “could not come to an agreement with Groves on sanction fees. The IBO super-middleweight title is now vacant.”

Prior to the fight, Eubank Jr responded to critics of the IBO title and defended its stature by pointing to the fact that several legends have held it at various points in their careers, although it should be pointed out that those in his Twitter post held more than one belt.

Fight fans simply loved the fact that Groves wouldn’t even give the IBO title the time of day and was happier to walk away from another world title rather than pay the sanctioning fees.