Carl Froch remains keenly involved in the sport many years after retirement and has been asked to rank his top five current heavyweights.
After holding multiple super-middleweight world titles and was involved in two of British boxing’s biggest events with George Groves, ‘The Cobra’ is never shy from offering his frank views on the state of play in the boxing game.
Most recently, he has been asked by TNT Sports Boxing to list his current top five big men and reels off the first four without hesitation.
“In no particular order Tyson Fury, Oleksandr Usyk, Deontay Wilder, Anthony Joshua.”
He then began to explain his choices.
“It’s a reluctant top five. It’s not an AJ hate game, it’s based on previous performances and losses. He has only lost to the best in Usyk, but before that he got wiped out and hurt against Ruiz.”
Froch picks ‘The Gypsy King’ as the best in the world, but believes that may change soon.
“I think Fury is number one even though I predict Usyk beats Fury and I still have Fury at number one. Usyk needs to gain the number one spot by beating Fury. But Fury has to be one based on what he’s done. Usyk two cause he beat AJ. Three Wilder. Had three fights with Fury, nearly won the first one.”
He then explained why Joshua is fourth.
“Four, Anthony Joshua. Tall, strong, rangy, can box a bit, won an Olympic medal, climbed off the canvas to beat [Wladimir] Klitschko. What a fight that was. Defended against everybody and he took on Usyk when he didn’t have to. Could have vacated the belt.”
The final pick is one he struggled with.
“Five is the interesting one. Who do we put there, you’ve got Hrgovic, Zhang. Everyone went mad when Francis Ngannou was put 10 with the WBC. Mauricio Sulaiman defended it and rightly so. Jared Anderson. Otto Wallin. We might find out where he belongs soon. Miller, Dubois. If you’ve got to pick one, we need a couple of fights to find out.”
Froch was pushed to make a decision and went with the man who has twice stopped Joe Joyce this year.
“I think I’m going to put Zhang in there. He’s capable. Good fighter.”
Zhang is very much waiting in the wings to take on the likes of Joshua or Fury should he come through his undisputed fight on February 17, at which point the Chinese fighter might well catapult himself much higher up the list.