George Groves reveals wife might not make Callum Smith fight over strict Saudi Arabia rules for women

GEORGE GROVES says his wife could miss only his second ever boxing fight due to the strict laws in Saudi Arabia.

While it has been revealed women will be allowed to watch inside the stadium – in the past they weren't allowed to, Groves is still wary of issues Sophie could have.

 George Groves says his wife and mother to his two children Sophie has not decided whether she is flying out to Saudi Arabia

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George Groves says his wife and mother to his two children Sophie has not decided whether she is flying out to Saudi Arabia

The Islington boxer defends his WBA super-middleweight title against Callum Smith in the World Boxing Super Series final.

Groves cruised past Chris Eubank Jr in the semi-final to put him in reaching distance of lifting the Ali Trophy in the final against Smith.

But he says it’s only a “maybe” that his wife and "No1 fan" will come to Saudi Arabia to watch his final fight in the tournament.

Speaking about the event, Groves said: “Yeah it’s not ideal. Maybe she’ll get out here and test the waters."

 George Groves will put his WBA world titlle on the line against Callum Smith - but will his nearest and dearest be ringside to cheer him on

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George Groves will put his WBA world titlle on the line against Callum Smith – but will his nearest and dearest be ringside to cheer him on
 George Groves, as he is for most of his fights, will be the favourite when he fights in Jeddah on Friday night

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George Groves, as he is for most of his fights, will be the favourite when he fights in Jeddah on Friday night

Sophie, who is the mother of two young children with George, has missed only one of her husband's 31 professional fights after he made his debut back in 2008.

She finally made it to a card featuring her other half at the Brentwood Leisure centre in 2010 after being stuck in traffic for five hours.

But he was already showering after doing the business in the ring with a third-round KO win over Grigor Sarohanian.

But like most people in the UK, there is always the fall-back option of watching it on TV.

George added: “We’ll be alright, if she can’t make it or we decide she doesn’t need to come, we’ll be fine.

“Yeah she’s booked it, she’s planning ahead.”

Sauerland, who are promoting the event in Saudi Arabia, say there are "no problems" with wives and girlfriends attending the event in Jeddah, but warn that local customs "must be respected".

This would include women 'covering up' in public, not being allowed to try on clothes in changing rooms, and keeping interaction to a non-related male to a minimum.

Getting back to the fight and talking about facing his fellow Brit, the undefeated Smith, Groves thinks he will win by knockout.

George Groves takes on Callum Smith in the final of the Super-Middleweight World Boxing Super Series live on ITV Box Office

He added: “Yeah I believe so, his chin hasn’t been tested, not been tested by someone who hits as hard as me.

“The pressure I’m going to put him under – the pace I’m going to make him fight at I don’t think he’s going to cope with that, I think he’s going to.

“I’m going to hurt him and I’m definitely going to be able to finish him.

"It’s not [Marvin] Hagler versus [Tommy] Hearns, it’s not a three round fight, it’s not that sort of thing.

“I’ll be calm, I’ll be composed, I’ll be setting traps, I’ll be dictating the fight, I’ll be landing big shots from the get go.

“As soon as the time comes, I’ll be able to capitalise and I’m sure that’ll happen before the final bell."

GEORGE GROVES says his wife could miss only his second ever boxing fight due to the strict laws in Saudi Arabia.