Boxing can often be a frustrating for fans due to the lack of organised structure that you see in pretty much every other sport. Champions often avoid the best challengers due to strategy or politics, while the sheer number of organisations and belts available in each weight class make it a confusing sport for all but the most devoted of fans.

A new competition hopes to bring some clarity to two of the most exciting divisions in boxing. The World Boxing Super Series is a straight knockout tournament that will see eight of the world's top boxers compete for the Muhammad Ali Trophy, in both the super-middleweight and cruiserweight class.

It's not the first time a tournament like this has been attempted. The Super Six saw half a dozen top super-middleweights fighting it out between 2009 and 2011, but the bloated format which included a group stage before the knockout phase, saw a number of withdrawals and tested the interest of fans with it's two-year duration.

The World Boxing Super Series has a much more manageable schedule, that will see the eventual finalists fight three times in ten months. The action kicks off in September and the super-middleweight competition will be of great interest to UK fight fans, with a possible four of the entrants being British.

If Chris Eubank Jnr wins his upcoming bout with the former two-weight world champion Arthur Abraham, he will join Jamie Cox, George Groves and Callum Smith in the tournament, with all but Cox being seeded. Eubank is the 1.22 favourite to beat the veteran Armenian when he puts his lightly-regarded IBO title on the line next weekend.

The WBA world champion Groves was the number one seed and picked Cox as his quarter-final opponent. Groves could meet Eubank in the semi-finals if they both progress, with Smith expected to reach the final from the other side of the draw.

Smith should be be the narrow favourite to win the super-middleweight tournament when the markets settle down, at a probable price of around 2.62. Though not nearly as experienced as Groves and with more questions unanswered regarding his ability, Smith has landed in the easier side of the draw.

The other seed that he could fight in the semi-final is Juergen Braehmer, but the 38-year old German has not fought at super-middleweight since moving up to light-heavyweight in 2008 and has been inactive since losing his WBA title against Nathan Cleverly last year.

Though Smith is a worthy favourite at this stage due to his easier schedule, Groves is still the best bet at 2.76. He should dispense with Cox, whose reputation is based on sparring stories rather than his actual record and would be too big and strong for Eubank if they met in the semi-finals.

Eubank is the third favourite to win the tournament at 4.00. His chances rest on his undoubted stamina, but Groves is much improved in that regard under his new trainer Shane McGuigan, having won fights against Martin Murray, Eduard Gutknecht and Fedor Chudinov in the last year, that were all fought at a fast pace. Besides, it remains to be seen whether Eubank will even get as far as entering the tournament, with his team being among the most unreliable negotiators in the sport.

If the super-middleweight competition is exciting for it's potential British clashes, the cruiserweight version is simply mouthwatering for boxing aficionados. The likes of the injured IBF world champion James DeGale and the WBO belt holder Gilberto Ramirez have not entered at super middleweight, but the cruiserweight tournament will categorically prove who is the best in the world.

Cruiserweight is a division stacked with exciting talent but without any superstars, which no doubt helped in getting the top names signed up. With the eventual winner likely to earn an eight figure payday from prize money, television revenue and gate receipts, the tournament has attracted the cruiserweight champions from all four of the major sanctioning bodies.

The WBO champion Oleksandr Usyk is the obvious favourite, but is too short to consider at 1.80. With so much talent in the competition and the potential for injury forcing withdrawals - even for boxers that progress - the value can be found elsewhere.

Like Usyk, the IBF champion Murat Gassiev is unbeaten and should make the last four having been drawn against his mandatory challenger Krzysztof Wlodarczyk. The Russian is good value at 6.00 as he's on the other side of the draw from Usyk and if you're looking for a live outsider, Mike Perez at 17.00 could pull off a shock if his power endures having moved down from heavyweight.

Recommended Bets

Back Groves to win the super-middleweight tournament at 2.76
Back Gassiev to win the cruiserweight tournament at 6.00

0 nhận xét Blogger 0 Facebook

Post a Comment