Carl Froch retires: Former world champion ends boxing career

How reluctant boxer Froch became The Cobra

Britain's four-time world super-middleweight champion Carl Froch has retired from boxing.

The 38-year-old won 33 of his 35 fights, with 24 victories by knockout.

Froch has not fought since he knocked out George Groves to retain the WBA and IBF titles in May 2014.

"I have nothing left to prove and my legacy speaks for itself. I'm incredibly proud of what I have achieved in boxing but now is the right moment to hang up my gloves," he said.

Why Froch will not be forgotten
"Fighting Carl Froch must have been like being pursued by a boulder, gathering speed through a tunnel. Most who turned to brace themselves got flattened. Some who ran got splattered as they grasped for the light. The most tenacious reached the exit. But only the fleetest had their hand raised after the trauma."
Read more from Ben Dirs on Froch the "throwback fighter"

Speaking to BBC Radio 5 live, Froch added: "It wasn't an easy decision but it wasn't as difficult as people might think.

"I turned 38 last week. My joints and bones are aching. If the desire was there, I could fight again but there's nothing motivating me.

"I've got nothing left to prove and I'm bowing out at the top."

Retirement decision made recently - Froch

Froch first revealed he was thinking about quitting last June, after his rematch with Groves in front of 80,000 people at Wembley.

They had originally fought in November 2013 when Froch won via a controversial ninth-round stoppage.

The former English, British and Commonwealth champion wanted to secure bouts in Las Vegas and his hometown of Nottingham before stopping.

But a clash with Mexican Julio Cesar Chavez Jr in Vegas in March fell through after Froch suffered an elbow injury, and talks over potential bouts against 50-year-old Bernard Hopkins and Kazakhstan's Gennady Golovkin did not lead to fights.

"There's only one man he'd come out of retirement for and that's Golovkin who is the 'beast of boxing' right now," said promoter Eddie Hearn.

"He's a knockout artist and Carl is potentially one of the few, sick in the head, elite level fighters that wants to get in the ring with him.

"However, I think he's done. At 38 it's not like he can have another year out and come back at 39. It's very hard walking away from top level sport but now he can sit on his sofa and enjoy retirement."

Froch's only defeats in his 13-year professional career came against Mikkel Kessler in 2010 and American Andre Ward in 2011, although he beat the Dane in a 2013 rematch.

He first won a world title in December 2008 by claiming the WBC belt in a points win over Canada's Jean Pascal in Nottingham.

Carl Froch Twitter

In his first defence he stopped Jermain Taylor with seconds remaining in the final round when he was well behind on two scorecards.

After losing to Kessler, he regained the WBC belt with a points win over Arthur Abraham in 2010, before adding the IBF and WBA titles later in his career.

Froch vacated his IBF belt in February, saying that a bout against mandatory challenger James DeGale did not make "financial or business sense" and "would not get me out of bed".

Londoner DeGale, 29, called Froch a "coward" before going on to beat American Andre Dirrell to claim the title in Boston in May.

Froch has confirmed he will now work as a boxing pundit for Sky Sports.

Reaction to Froch's retirement

Amir Khan
Britain's WBC Welterweight champion Amir Khan tweeted his congratulations

George Groves - who was knocked out by Froch in 2014 - paid tribute to the fighter but doubted whether he would have beaten some of the other greats in British boxing.

Groves told Sky Sports News: "Carl Froch was a tough, strong man, very tough, but I don't know how he would have got on with those guys.

"I don't think he'd have beaten Joe Calzaghe, Calzaghe would have been too quick for him. Him and Nigel Benn would have been an out-and-out war.

"Benn has a bit more skill and class about him but that would have been a great fight to watch."

Where does Froch rank in the list of British greats?
"Most wise observers think Joe Calzaghe would have boxed Froch's head off, just like Andre Ward did. But fights between Froch and Nigel Benn or Froch and Chris Eubank would have been sights to behold. Ding-ding, take cover, hold hands and hope you don't have nightmares."
Read more from Ben Dirs on Froch the "throwback fighter"

Andre Ward - one of only two men to beat Froch in his career - backed his decision to retire now.

Ward told Sky Sports:external-link "You have to respect the way he went about it, and the fact he not only stepped up but beat just about all the guys he fought at the top level.

"He was competitive in every fight and brought his best every time out, so I have nothing personal against Froch. I actually like him a lot because he reminds me a lot of myself with his competitiveness.

"He did it the right way - it's a victory to go out on your own terms with money and faculties intact. At the end of the day that's what it's all about."

Carl Froch's life in boxing
Born: Nottingham, 2 July 1977
Amateur honours: ABA middleweight champion, 1999 & 2001; World Amateur bronze, 2001
Turned pro: 16 March 2002
Pro record: 35 fights, 33 wins (24 KOs), two defeats
Pro honours: WBC, WBA, IBF super-middleweight champion, former English, British and Commonwealth champion
Best wins: Jean Pascal (PTS, 2008); Jermain Taylor (KO12, 2009); Lucian Bute (KO5, 2012); Mikkel Kessler (PTS, 2013); George Groves (TKO8, 2014)