Boxing

George Groves will face Martin Murray on Saturday.

George Groves knows next fight will prove worth of trainer switch

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George Groves knows Saturday's make-or-break fight with Martin Murray will reveal whether his switch to new trainer Shane McGuigan was the right one.

The super-middleweight ditched Paddy Fitzpatrick after last year's unsuccessful world title fight with Badou Jack to work with the third trainer of his professional career. McGuigan's profile has significantly grown having trained David Haye and Groves since January.

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Beyond his work with the undefeated Carl Frampton, however, he remains relatively unproven given Groves and Haye had been such favourites for the fights he had overseen before this weekend.

Murray - who has lost on each of the four times he has fought for a world title, once more than Groves - represents Groves' toughest fight since the Jack defeat last September. The winner can be expected to progress towards their latest challenge for a world title, leaving the loser's career needing to be rebuilt.

Asked if Saturday's date at London's 02 Arena is the time McGuigan's work can be judged, Groves responded: "Yeah. Martin Murray's of that level: a real good performance from me this weekend will show that we are doing things correctly, that we're on the right track.

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"There'll be more spotlight (on my partnership with McGuigan) because this is the fight that people can look forward to. They know both of the fighters, there'll be a lot of sing and dance in the build-up.

"If Klitschko-Fury wasn't two weeks later, me and Martin Murray would have been fighting on a stand alone show.

"There's definitely less pressure on my shoulders (since joining McGuigan). I've supreme confidence in Shane to get me prepared for fights. He's got a real good grasp of and experience of the business.

"I know he understands about gloves, and all the little bits and pieces that can go under the radar and you don't necessarily want to be worrying about as a fighter. I've a good trainer now, who's trained at the highest level.

"It's confidence in your trainer. I know I don't need to be thinking 'What do I need Shane to bring up at the rules meeting?', because Shane knows.

"And he'll show up on time, and he won't wear flip flops. Little things like that: and they're important. I'll weigh in and it's 'I've weighed in, I've done my bit, and I'm going up to bed'.

"Hopefully there'll come a time when I can stop watching opponents as well: Shane watches a lot more of Martin Murray than me and he's a grafter in that respect."

References to a lack of professionalism are thinly-veiled criticisms of Fitzpatrick, who oversaw a time when Groves appeared in decline.

The 28-year-old also appeared to have greater responsibility for his fight preparation, but he insists the blame for his previous disappointments lie with him.

"Yeah of course," he said when asked if he took responsibility for the mistakes made in his career.

"It's difficult in the moment: hindsight is a wonderful thing. Things I thought were gospel when I first turned pro proved to be wrong as time went on.

"I've changed my mind half a dozen times, I don't claim to know it all, I never really have. I'm in a great place now. Ultimately you've just got to assess from the outside how things are going and right now I feel like I'm boxing really well.

"Of course, the responsibility's got to finish with me because I'm the one who steps in the ropes to get the job done."

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