WBC Super Middleweight champ Carl “The Cobra” Froch will meet former WBA Super Middleweight champ Mikkel Kessler in March or April in the second round of SHOWTIME’S Super Six Tournament. In this interview Froch discusses his Super Six competition,
BoxingInsider: How would you describe your boxing style?
Carl Froch: “I can box, move, jab but I’m a fighter first and foremost. I could box more and make my career a lot easier – but that’s not what I’m about. I like to get stuck in. I like to fight.”
BoxingInsider: Do you think Mikkel Kessler might be damaged goods after his loss to Andre Ward?
Carl Froch: “No, he didn’t take that many blows, of course not. He had a few injuries with cuts around his eyes from head butts. But he wasn’t really an aging fighter. He didn’t really take a sustained beating for 12 rounds. He was unfortunate to get the cuts with the way in which Ward was fighting – diving in with his head. The referee out there allowed him to get away with it as well. Which was a shame.”
BoxingInsider: Who do you favor in the Arthur Abraham-Andre Dirrell matchup?
Carl Froch: “Well, I hope Abraham knocks him out. And if he catched him, he will knock him out. But I know how hard it is to chase someone like Dirrell and catch him. Because I went 12 rounds trying to catch him. And it’s difficult against someone who is so negative – to catch him. Whether or not Abraham could do what I couldn’t do – who knows. That remains to be seen. So Abraham could knock him out – or lose on points, unfortunately. But I think Abraham knocks him out.”
BoxingInsider: What are your impressions of Ward? Is he similar to Dirrell?
Carl Froch: “They’ve got similarities, in terms of they both are more boxer/movers. But Ward’s not as negative as Dirrell. Nowhere near as negative.”
BoxingInsider: How do you see your chances vs. Ward? How will you win?
Carl Froch: “Against Ward, I’ll just do what I do best. And that’s close the range. That’s the difference between Ward and Dirrell – Dirrell runs a lot more than Ward. Ward will, at times, stand up and fight. He just seems to hold a lot and he just seems to lead with his head. I’ve got the experience with plenty of fights where people have tried to hold. I don’t let them get away with that.”
BoxingInsider: Who has been the most impressive in the Super Six tournament so far? And who is the favorite to win now?
Carl Froch: “Well, you can say the best win was Ward against Kessler. But I don’t think the best Kessler turned up for the races. I think he got a bad cut. I think the most impressive win was myself and the favorite to win is myself. But I’m sure other people will disagree.”
BoxingInsider: Do you still hunger to face Joe Calzaghe?
Carl Froch: “No, not really. I saw him last month. And he looks like a fat, old man. So there’s not much sense to fight Calzaghe.”
BoxingInsider: Does your girlfriend (the model Rachael Cordingley) ever provide advice on your boxing strategies?
Carl Froch: “No, Rachael never gives me any boxing tips. I listen to my trainer. If I’m taking boxing advice from Rachael, it’s a bad day [smiles].”
BoxingInsider: Two huge wins over Jermain Taylor and then Dirrell. How did they impact your celebrity profile in the United Kingdom?
Carl Froch: “Yes, it’s brilliant. Beating Taylor (12th round KO), defending champion, and coming back to England, it’s been massive. And that’s the reason we sold out the Trent FM Arena with 9,000 fans at 3 o’clock in the morning. Not many people can do that. It’s unfortunate the way in which the fight unfolded – because of Dirrell’s negativity – but I’m a superstar now in my hometown. It’s brilliant. Covers on Boxing News, Boxing Monthly, a fitness magazine, and there’s bits and bobs going locally. I’m working close with a local council and I’m doing a lot of TV bits, Anne Robinson, The Question of Sport.”
BoxingInsider: Your a top fighter, persuasive speaker. Do you think acting could be in your future? You resemble James Bond in the photo shoot you recently did for MOVES Magazine.
Carl Froch: “Thank you. Yes, it would be nice to go into something like that after my boxing career. So something like that would be considered. We’re actually putting a pilot together – a boxing film in Nottingham. We’re putting a pilot together now. If we get any investors, we’ll then get a script. See how that goes.”
BoxingInsider: Your unbeaten as a professional. When is the last time you actually lost a boxing match?
Carl Froch: “In the semifinals of the world amateur championship against the Russian world champion (Andrey Gagayev) on points in 2001.”
BoxingInsider: Who are some of today’s boxers that you enjoy to watch?
Carl Froch: “All the best fighters really. Floyd Mayweather is just a great technician – offensively and defensively. Manny Pacquiao is so fast and explosive. I watched a lot of Miguel Cotto’s career. I enjoy watching him. David Haye – I like watching his fights because sometimes he’s a little bit of a kamikaze. There’s a lot of method to his madness, the way he fights. But David Haye is exciting to watch and I’m looking forward to see him fight the Klitschkos. He’s definitely got a chance there, a good chance.”
BoxingInsider: And last, Manny Pacquiao vs. Floyd Mayweather, who do you see as the superior fighter? Who will prevail?
Carl Froch: “I think Floyd Mayweather beats Pacquiao. He’s too technically proficient. His defense is too good. I can’t see Pacquiao doing anything with him. Basically because Mayweather’s defense is too good. His offense is good as well. He’ll frustrate Pacquiao, then he’ll break him down. Then he’ll beat him, he’ll either outpoint him or he’ll stop him. In my opinion.”
Perspectives on Carl Froch:
His trainer Robert McCracken: “Carl can fight. He’s highly regarded back home. I first heard of him 11 years ago. I first met him 10 years ago. He’s a special fighter. He’s very confident, has natural ability, timing and heavy-handedness. He’s a very hard puncher. With his reach, his arms are very long. He’s physically very strong. So he’s kind of got everything you need in a fighter. He’s also kind of unorthodox which also makes it more difficult for the opponent. Carl’s 100% professional. He’s diligent in everything he does. He’s very level-headed and listens to the right advice. He’ll keep a cool head on fight night. He’s a very formidable fighter and the best super middleweight in the world.”
Boxing News Editor Tris Dixon: ”
Froch is a man’s man and a fighter’s fighter. He ducks no one, fears no one and wants to be recognised as the best fighter in his division. He is a big-punching hard man, has a terrific chin and one can only anticipate the fireworks when he steps in with fighters who think the same, like Mikkel Kessler and Arthur Abraham. He was a 2001 World amateur bronze medallist and was convinced he would have medalled had he been in the Sydney Olympics of 2000. His popularity is a strange beast in this country. A hero in Nottingham, he’s been in numerous exciting fights yet has failed to nail down a TV deal over here. He is no underachiever but he is under-appreciated. I have worked with Carl numerous times and he is gracious with his time. Just last week we slotted in an hour-long interview and he had a number of professional commitments to meet and still had to buy his Christmas tree. He’s a pro who’s doing things the right way but has yet to crossover into the mainstream which is too bad, because he merits his place alongside stars from other sports. He does not crave the publicity but he deserves to be recognised for his achievements.”
Artist LeRoy Neiman: “This guy Froch really likes to fight. I’ve never seen a fighter that likes to fight as much as him.”
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