World Boxing Super Series 168 LB Tourney Odds – The World Boxing Super Series recently made a splash on the boxing scene by announcing two 8-man single elimination tournaments set to start in September. The 168 pound super middleweight tournament was closed out with the announcement that Britain’s Chris Eubank Jr was filling the final spot. Now the WBSS has announced the first round match-ups and the sports books have released early lines.
The top seed of the tournament is “Saint” George Groves (26-3), the popular Briton who holds the WBA version of the world title at 168 pounds. Groves is best remembered for his pair of losses to Carl Froch, the second of which filled Wembley Stadium back in May of 2014. As the number one seed Groves picked his opening round opponent and he settled on fellow countryman Jamie Cox (23-0). Cox is 30 years old and he has worked his way up through the ranks to the regional and European title level, but this match-up with Groves represents a huge jump in class for Cox.
The third seed heading into this tournament is recent addition Chris Eubank Jr, who is coming off a successful WBO world title defense against veteran former champion Arthur Abraham. Eubank Jr will face Turkey’s Avni Yilidrim (16-0). Yilidrim is one of the more inexperienced competitors though he has netted wins over known quantities such as Aaron Pryor Jr, Marco Antonio Pariban and Glen Johnson this match-up with Eubank Jr is being viewed as his first steps onto the world stage. In Eubank Jr, he is facing a fighter who believes he was born for the world stage.
Hard working Brit Callum Smith (22-0) is the number two seed and he is slated to face Sweden’s Erik Skoglund (26-0). Skoglund is 26 years old and like Yilidrim, he has faced a few hand picked names that traveled to Denmark or Sweden to fight him. Smith is from Liverpool and it is his hometown’s Echo Arena that will host the fight so this will be the first time for Skoglund outside of Scandinavia. Smith is from a fighting family that includes four brothers who all compete at a high level. It can be said that Smith lives, breathes, eats and sleeps boxing and he elected to enter this tournament instead of pursuing a world title fight.
The final bout sees veteran light heavyweight world champion Jurgen Brahmer (48-3) of Germany as he faces American Rob Brant (22-0). Brant is youngfand talented but this is a huge step up in level of competition for him.
Also, check out our latest TalknShoot Boxing Podcast where we talk more about the WBSS tournaments, right here at GMS.
World Boxing Super Series 168 LB Tourney Odds
The winners od Groves vs Cox and Yilidrim vs Eubank Jr are expected to meet in the second round, as are the winners of the Brant vs Brahmer and Smith vs Skoglund bouts. If as expected Eubank Jr faces Groves in round two and Callum Smith advances, there is the possibility of an all-British final where Smith takes on either Eubank Jr or Groves.
Though the super middleweight tournament is packed with talent, it is viewed as slightly less deep than the cruiserweight tournament. Perhaps that impression comes from the fact that their are four British fighters in the eight man bracket
World Boxing Super Series Q1 – Super Middleweight 12 rounds – Sat 9/2
Jamie Cox +310
George Groves -400
Avni Yildirim +400
Chris Eubank Jr -550
Rob Brant +135
Juergen Braehmer -165
Super Middleweight 12 rounds –
Erik Skoglund +1000
Callum Smith -1750
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