SportBoxing

Four-time World Champion Carl Froch retires from boxing

Froch knocking George Groves out in front of 80,000 people in Wembley Arena.
Froch knocking George Groves out in front of 80,000 people in Wembley Arena.

Carl Froch, former holder of British, Commonweawlth and English Super Middleweight titles has hung up his gloves.

Four-time world champion Carl Froch announced his retirement from boxing this morning after over a year away from the sport after stating: "I think the desire has gone."

Super middleweight Froch, nicknamed The Cobra, twice won the WBC title, as well as taking the WBA and IBF belts, during a highly successful career.

The 38-year-old Nottingham fighter won 33 of his 35 fights, with 24 of those coming by knock-out.

He defeated arch-rival George Groves in a Wembley Stadium re-match which turned out to be his final fight in May of last year.

Froch said: "I'm incredibly proud of what I have achieved in boxing but now is the right moment to hang up my gloves.

"I have nothing left to prove and my legacy speaks for itself.

"I've got no regrets. I'm not retiring undefeated but in many ways that's better because I've boxed everybody, I've faced every challenge.

"So many athletes, not just boxers, don't get their defining moment. I've probably had seven or eight defining moments, but the biggest and best was on the platform of Wembley Stadium in front of 80,000 fans. It was amazing and to get that defining moment is enough."

Froch, who will become a boxing pundit, told Sky Sports News: "If I could fight again physically I would, but mentally I'm not sure. I think the desire has gone.

"There will always be options and it's never going to stop. There's always going to be somebody next in line or ready to try to take my scalp.

"And if that's never going to go away, at what point do you say, 'Right, now is the time to retire', based on challengers and opponents?

"You can't wait for that, it's got to be from within here, and as much as it hurts, and as hard as it is for me, and even making the decision to retire and saying it's been a year, it's too long, the fighting machine has gone, it's not going to come back, it's still hard.

"The last thing I think about before my head hits the pillow is boxing, and when I wake up in the morning to think what time it is, and I think it's half six, seven o'clock, should I be going for a run, where's my trainers - it's a lifestyle, a way of life, and it's a mindset. I'll always have that and I think I'll always be itching for the big fight."

Froch admitted in January of this year that the thought of never fighting again had some appeal, saying it was "quite a nice thought".

An elbow injury forced Froch out of a planned March 28 fight against Julio Cesar Chavez Jr in Las Vegas.

At the time, Froch posted a photograph of his gloves hanging up on social media, sparking suggestions of a possible retirement.

Froch thought then that he would rediscover his appetite but reached the conclusion it was time to step away from the ring.

He vacated his IBF super middleweight title in February as he continued to recover from the elbow injury that scuppered the Cesar Chavez Jr fight.

"There's no greater feeling for me than standing victorious in the arena and I'm never going to get that again now, and I don't know where I'm going to get that feeling from," Froch said.

"I don't know where it's going to come; maybe it's not. That's what I'm turning my back on and that's what's going to be difficult to do, but there comes a time in every man's career where he's got to say, 'That's it, enough's enough'.

"I feel civilised now. I feel like Carl Froch the fighting machine is still in there - the fire is still in the belly - but it's been too long.

"I just feel like that fighting machine that I love so much and that I need to be to compete at the top level, I feel like it's been put away for too long, and I don't know if I can get hold of him again and go one more time. I really don't think I could."

Froch's fight promoter Eddie Hearn said: "He's always tried to be a positive role model and I feel he can give back a lot to British boxing.

"He's given a lot as well. You should remember Carl Froch for the fighter that he is, someone that never ducked anyone, something that gave the paying public value for money every single day of the week."

Hearn told Sky Sports News: "I've learned a lot from being around him. He's an inspirational guy, and he's not someone who's come from the Olympic background and he's been given the platform to go out. He's grafted for every single penny, every bit of success he's ever had, and for that you have to give him ultimate respect."