BITTER rivals James DeGale MBE and Chris Eubank Jr met face-to-face at the Hotel Cafe Royal in central London today at a press conference to announce their highly-anticipated blockbuster showdown on Saturday February 23 at The O2, exclusively live on ITV Box Office.
The exciting, all-British, clash marks the debut event for Haymon Sports and Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) in the UK following the groundbreaking deal announced with ITV and Poxon Sports.
DeGale and Eubank Jnr will finally settle their long-running war of words in a super-middleweight championship contest to finally decide the Best of British in the biggest boxing rivalry since the epic Nigel Benn-Chris Eubank wars over a quarter of century ago.
DeGale, former two-time IBF world super-middleweight champion, said, “When he first turned professional he was calling me out, he’s very deluded. On February 23 I get my chance to deal with this guy good and proper and finish him. After Eubank has lost to me I don’t know where he is going to go. I’m calling this the retirement fight and whoever losses can knock it on the head, it’s game over. He’s got heart and big set of balls but that’s not going to be enough to beat me.”
Eubank Jr, former IBO super-middleweight champion, said, “This fight has been four or five years in the making and it’s going to be a painful lesson for him. I’ve been training for years to beat him and I know everything about him. James talks retirement, but that has never even come into my mind. I hope he can bring the best he can bring on the night and give the fans the most exciting and explosive fight that we possibly can. I just don’t think he has what it takes.”
Promoter Richard Poxon of Poxon Sports, said, “This is a fantastic all British super-middleweight fight that takes us back to the glory days on ITV. James DeGale against Chris Eubank Jr is one of the most highly anticipated fights of recent years and I can’t wait for it. Everyone knows the calibre and quality of James, an Olympic champion and two-time world champion. Chris is a top level fighter, but feels that he has something to prove after the George Groves fight and will be going all out for it. It’s going to be a war between the two of them and the fans at The O2 and the viewers on ITV Box Office are in for something special.”
Tickets will go on sale on Friday January 4 at midday to O2 Priority customers and to the public at midday on Monday January 7. Tickets available from www.AXS.com and Inner Ringside/VIP Hospitality from www.sportandmusic.co.uk.
This fight will be shown exclusively on ITV Box Office. For further information and updates, please go to www.itvboxoffice.com.
Late last year, ITV announced a ground-breaking new deal with Haymon Sports and Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) to bring exclusive coverage of exciting PBC world-class boxing events to ITV viewers and fight fans in the UK.
The unique collaboration is the first time that Haymon Sports and PBC has partnered with a UK broadcaster to stage boxing events regularly in the UK. The exclusive three-year deal will guarantee a minimum of 15 televised events each year, drawing from PBC’s unrivalled group of over 160 of the best boxers in the world, which includes more than 60 current and former world champions in matches staged both in the UK and the US. PBC, the sports’ pre-eminent boxing brand, is broadcast over cable and network television in the United States.
The world-class action from events for the next three years will include free-to-air broadcasts on ITV’s channels, including ITV main channel and ITV4 and ITV Hub, and will also include pay per views on ITV’s PPV channel, ITV Box Office.
This new deal for boxing adds to ITV Sport’s portfolio of first class events, which includes exclusive free to air coverage of the England football team’s qualifiers for both the European Championship and World Cup, the 6 Nations and exclusive coverage of the Rugby World Cup, UK horse racing, the Tour de France and the French Open.