• James DeGale v Marco Antonio Periban

DeGale calls Froch a 'coward' after stoppage win

ESPN staff
November 22, 2014
James DeGale wasted no time in calling out Carl Froch following his stoppage of Marco Antonio Pariban © PA Photos

James DeGale branded Carl Froch a "coward" for not yet agreeing to fight him for the IBF world super-middleweight title.

DeGale, the mandatory challenger to Froch's IBF belt, produced an explosive third round stoppage over Marco Antonio Periban on the undercard of Nathan Cleverly's grudge rematch with Tony Bellew.

After his victory, DeGale instantly called out the watching Froch, telling Sky Sports Box Office: "I like Carl but it feels like he doesn't want to fight me, I respect him but I think he's being a bit of a coward not fighting me - fight me or vacate the title. I am the mandatory for the IBF title - I want to make history."

Froch, though, was dismissive in his response: "Boxing is a business and I've got a promoter - Eddie Hearn - if the fight makes commercial sense, it will happen. I want to fight in Las Vegas. If the fight could happen in Las Vegas, let's go over there and do it. But it's probably not going to happen. I've earned the right to decide where I fight next."

DeGale was ferocious from the off at Liverpool's Echo Arena and after 30 seconds of the third round he made the statement he promised, landing two huge lefts to render Periban unable to continue.

He added: "He's never been stopped, Sakio Bika couldn't stop him and I was only getting warmed up. That left hand is my shot at the moment. I hit him and he was stumbling around, he wasn't in a position to carry on."

Earlier on the undercard, Scott Quigg defended his WBA super-bantamweight title for the fifth time with a wide points win over Hidenori Othake.

Quigg peppered the Japanese champion from start to finish, but the courageous visitor would not be removed despite a nasty cut over the right eye that the doctors had several looks at in the last few rounds.

Quigg said: "I tell you what, I know his head is tough, I tried to pour on the gas at the end and landed some great combinations but he wasn't going nowhere and fair play to him, but 12 rounds is never a bad thing to get under your belt."

Callum Smith dominated Nikola Sjekloca over 12 rounds to successfully defend his WBC International super-middleweight crown in a world title eliminator.

Smith said: "My Nan passed away last week and she would've been 80 tonight. It was a tough week but going to the gym and getting away from it all maybe helped. He's been to points twice with [Sakio] Bika and [Arthur] Abraham but I hurt him with body shots and that shows I can hurt some good fighters. It's another box ticked with the 12 rounds under the belt."

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
ESPN staff Close