IN the early days of his professional career, Chris Eubank Jr sparred with British boxing’s elite super-middleweights, James DeGale and George Groves, experiences that contribute to his thinking as he throws out challenges to potential opponents now.

“I only sparred DeGale once, I had my way with him pretty much all the time all eight rounds. Groves, it was always very competitive,” Eubank told Boxing News. “But a lot of the time I would come out on top, in my opinion. I’m sure he would probably say the same thing. That’s how I see it.”

He also recalled sparring Carl Froch, one the leading boxers in the division who twice defeated George Groves. “You saw the sparring with Froch. Very strong. There’s moments when he’s easy to hit but that’s always been his style. He’s not a defensive fighter. He’s a power puncher and a war-monger. I learned a lot from sparring these guys. It was a great experience for me early on in my career,” Eubank said.

Carl Froch

“I learned that I was a world class fighter. I already knew. That was kind of like a reassurance I can go in there and spar one of the best fighters at the time and more than hold my own. I was sparring him at one point with one hand. I hurt my left hand so I couldn’t use my left hand. I went in there anyway and did six rounds. I did that twice with just my right hand. I held my own. I caught him with shots, worked on defence.

“He was surprised that I actually decided to continue with one hand. I was hungry to learn and hungry to compete and hungry to get better.”