My social networks have been pretty filled up today with talk of the boxing match between Froch and Groves tonight at Wembley stadium.
Am I going?No. Am I going to watch? No. Am I even remotely interested? No. Boxing is a great sport and I think that at its two ends – olympic and amateur; and Las Vegas and OTT, it can be a great spectacle. However there is the same problem with boxing as there is in snooker – there are no more heroes anymore.
Look back to the 1980s, football and rugby were barely noticed in the television schedules, and as far as I know there was hardly any interest in athletics outside of the Olympics or tennis with Wimbledon. Mind you, nothing much has changed really there.
What you had in the 1980s with snooker and boxing was personalities – people who were entertaining to watch and who had a great character. For boxing, this was definitely the case in the 1990s too, as Tyson came and went, Holyfield proved to be the everyman and Bruno and Lennox Lewis fought out the British affections. At lower weights, Benn, Eubank, Watson and Prince Naseem divided people, but captured attention like no other time for lower weight ranges. Who is the middleweight champion now?
Aside from the likes of Mayweather and Pacquiao, boxing barely has any stars these days, and I do throw in Britain’s Amir Kham. A terrific star, but seemingly unable to escape his amateur side, whatever happened to his promising sibling(s)?
Boxing should and probably will come good again, but for now and tonight, I’ll see who wins and wonder what their first names were.