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Page last updated at 12:18 GMT, Sunday, 25 April 2010 13:18 UK

BBC man Robin Chipperfield on Froch-Watch

Carl Froch
Froch suffered the first defeat of his 27-fight career

By Robin Chipperfield
BBC Radio Nottingham

It was a pretty solemn journey back from the Messecenter in Herning to the "Team Froch" hotel in the early hours of a mild Danish morning.

The journey took some 40 minutes, with plenty of contemplation of what a fantastic fight it had been, where Carl goes from here, how much his perforated eardrum had affected him, and how much class the Nottingham fighter exhibited after the gruelling contest.

Whilst Mikkel Kessler left the ring after his commitments with the media, Froch hung around looking a dejected figure, but still had that willingness to speak to every requesting outlet.

He was not blaming the injury, he queried the decision, but still paid a glowing tribute to his welcoming hosts and to his battle-scarred opponent. I had always wondered how he would cope with defeat. How much it would shock him. He handled it with dignity.

Mikkel Kessler (left) and Carl Froch
Kessler won Froch's WBC title as a result of his victory

And all the time whilst he was talking to the UK's top boxing journalists, the party outside the arena was just getting started. The likes of "Hey, Mickey" blared out from the speakers as Denmark prepared to party. The contrast between a bedraggled and downbeat boxer and the Danish excitement was stark.

As I left the Messecenter at around 1.15am Danish time, Froch was just off to a press conference. I got back to the hotel around 2am, Froch would have been a little way behind. Yet his schedule had him leaving the hotel at 6.30am to fly back to the UK. It had been a punishing hour or so in a captivating fight, yet there were a sapping few hours still to come.

So Arthur Abrahams is next up for the man who will be 33 by the time he fights him. Whether the punishment he took on Saturday night will mean that he will have to delay that contest remains to be seen, and the venue is still open to conjecture.

Froch will surely hope he can get back on home soil in Nottingham - even just to eliminate the ludicrous scoring which saw him lose the fight by six rounds on one judge's scorecard - but it could yet be in Berlin or even Birmingham.

606: DEBATE
jimdig

Earlier in the day, Froch had appeared confident and relaxed, and he was operating in the mode which he had for the past couple of days.

Having been shopping in the town a few hundred yards from the hotel, he walked back over the river towards his room alongside his pregnant girlfriend, Rachael Cordingley, and with a bag in each hand. Only the strut and expensive sunglasses gave away the fact that he was not a Dane out for a stroll in the warm Silkeborg sun.

Within 10 minutes, he joined me live on BBC Radio Nottingham, and spoke confidently about what was ahead of him. He momentarily forgot about the time difference, and thought his beloved Nottingham Forest were 20 minutes into their clash with Plymouth. "How we getting on?" he asked. For the first time in a few days, when I told him they had not started yet, there was a look of disappointment on his face.

As he strode lazily out of the room where the interview took place, he was going for a lay-down and possibly a sleep in mid-afternoon. He had convinced me, and he looked convinced that it was to be his night. Not for the want of trying, it proved not to be.



see also
Froch 'gutted' after Kessler loss
25 Apr 10 |  Boxing
Froch v Kessler photos
24 Apr 10 |  Boxing
Kessler snatches title from Froch
24 Apr 10 |  Boxing
BBC man on Froch-Watch
21 Apr 10 |  Boxing
BBC man on Froch-Watch
22 Apr 10 |  Boxing
Froch-Kessler certain to go ahead
19 Apr 10 |  Boxing


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