Alec Swann - You talk before you can walk

Northamptonshire Telegraph's sports writers Jon Dunham, Jim Lyon and Alec Swann.
Northamptonshire Telegraph's sports writers Jon Dunham, Jim Lyon and Alec Swann.

George Groves annoys me.

Not in a boxing sense as I’ve not seen enough of him - just a few snippets here and there - to pass a considered judgement but in the way he conducts himself.

And more specifically, how he has gone about his business in the build-up to his fight with Carl Froch next weekend in Manchester.

The two will go toe-to-toe for the WBA and IBF super-middleweight titles, both of which are held by Froch, next Saturday night and the promotion for this all-British contest has been in full flow for a while now.

And while Froch has kept his utterances to the minimum, Groves has been far from shy of offering an opinion as to what is goinf to take place.

And if you go on what has come out of his mouth, you’d think that the verdict is a foregone conclusion.

Forget the fact that he is the challenger and the underdog with the bookies and ignore the statistics which show he has a poorer record than his opponent.

Just go on the strength of his conviction and the audacity of his unfounded claims and you won’t go far wrong.

But while this will appear as a gripe with one particular fighter, it could be directed at the fight game as a whole.

You barely see a contest these days where one, if not both, participants make it their duty to relentlessly trash talk in a bid to hype up their upcoming grapple.

And by and large, well certainly in the ones I’ve paid any attention to, it is the challenger who has the most to say.

And while I won’t go as far as saying I find this distasteful, I do wonder whether any of it is really necessary.

Not once have I been tempted to watch a fight because of the vitriol spouted by the protaganists and nor will I be in the future.

If the magnitude of a particular fight warrants it, then it is often worth watching.

Nobody should be under any illusions as to the bottle shown by those who choose to make their living from such a profession but mock-bravado doesn’t add to this in any way.

And while a high level of self-belief is a neccessity if any success is to be garnered, this can be nurtured and displayed minus the verbal insults.

So please George Groves, keep it shut from now on.

From what I’ve seen, you’ve talked all of the talk, but until those belts are around your waist, you haven’t yet walked any of the walk.