WHAT’S next for George Groves remains an open question. The Londoner lost his WBA super-middleweight title to Callum Smith in the final of the World Boxing Super Series in Jeddah in September. He will now take a break from the sport, from training, as he considers his future.

His trainer, Shane McGuigan gave Boxing News his breakdown of the fight. “I thought George was doing well, started a bit slow. We had a deadline with the shoulder, rushed it back [from injury] a little bit but he had a guy, Ben Carraway, who did a phenomenal job in rehabbing it, so did Kevin Lidlow and George, credit to himself, put in so much effort. Now the fight’s happened. From a tactical standpoint he did well, he was getting his jab off as the rounds were going through. Callum’s got a good drop back, but when George was doubling his feint up, jabbing he was getting success. But he got caught with a great shot and in hindsight could have took a knee but didn’t. Got hit with a great body shot. You’ve just got to take it as it is. We were up with one scorecard, we were down with another and we were level on the other. It was a pick ‘em fight. But Callum hurt him in the third round and obviously in the seventh it was a very, very good finish,” McGuigan said.

Groves needs to reinvigorate himself now. “We’ve had three years together and we’ve had such a busy, busy schedule,” his trainer said. “He’s had a lot on his plate, overcoming the shoulder. I think his mind’s exhausted more so than his body. He needs a bit of time off, reassess his career and his goals and see where he wants to go with his life. That can only happen with time.

George Groves

“I said get out the gym, for the whole rest of the year. He’s been doing it since he was 20 years of age, as a pro. He’s boxing since 11, kickboxing when he was nine. He hasn’t done anything else but be in the gym the whole time, non-stop. He thought he had a big time out between Badou Jack and working with me but it was really only four months and he was training for three of those.

“He’s got to have some time out to mentally let himself recharge.”