George Groves plans to face Anthony Dirrell could be on back burner
Last Updated: 07/02/15 10:14am
George Groves might have to wait for his world title shot against WBC champion Anthony Dirrell after his promoter claimed the American would make a voluntary defence.
The Hammersmith fighter is mandatory challenger for Dirrell's super-middleweight title and had hoped to face the Michigan man early this year.
But Kalle and Nisse Sauerland, who promote Groves, have revealed Dirrell has been given permission by the WBC to pick his own opponent before fulfilling his obligation to fight his mandatory foe.
Writing on their official Twitter feed, the Sauerlands said: "WBC boxing voted in favour of four month extension for voluntary defence. No opponent or explanation given as yet.
"We will be putting out a public statement next week. Thanks for the continued public support. Keep it up.
"My money is on Dirrell v Badou Jack who got whacked in the 1st round by Derek Edwards. Worthy challenger..."
A WBC statement read: "Mandatory contender George Groves won the WBC silver championship and made a successful voluntary defense last November while Dirrell had been granted a voluntary defense before making the mandatory defense of the division.
"George Groves' team submitted an appeal rejecting Dirrell to make a voluntary defense requesting the mandatory fight to take place immediately.
"After a thorough revision and a voting process by the WBC Board of Governors the ruling has confirmed the following: To permit Anthony Dirrell to make the proposed voluntary defense in the month of April with the winner committed to fight mandatory challenger George Groves without any intervening bouts."
Just last week, Groves admitted he was hoping for a 'super fight' against James DeGale, with both men holding world titles.
But he could be forced to watch his bitter rival claim a world title first after promoter Eddie Hearn revealed plans for DeGale to fight for the vacant IBF belt on April 25.