Super middleweight titleholder Carl Froch may not be the smoothest operator in the ring but the once-beaten Brit's unyielding self belief makes up for any shortcomings in his style or technique.
Froch, who out-pointed former light heavyweight champ Glen Johnson on Saturday to earn a shot at Andre Ward in the finals of Showtime's Super Six tournament, is confident that he can beat the undefeated American titleholder.
Ward (24-0, 13 knockouts), THE RING's No. 1-rated super middleweight, has been the favorite to win the tournament since he dethroned pre-tourney favorite Mikkel Kessler in his first Super Six bout in November of 2009. Ward shutout Allan Green in his second tournament bout and out-pointed Sakio Bika in a non-tournament fight. All three bouts took place in his hometown of Oakland, Calif. His last fight, a unanimous decision over Arthur Abraham in a Super Six semifinal, took place in Carson, Calif.
Ward-Froch will take place later in the year at site to be determined. Froch, who's tournament track record consists of a narrow split decision over Andre Dirrell in his hometown of Nottingham, England, a close decision loss to Kessler, a shutout over Abraham and the Johnson victory, says he's looking forward to it.
"It's going to be a massive fight," he said during the post-fight press conference for the Johnson bout on Saturday. "It's a fantastic sporting occasion between two of the top super middleweights in the world, but it's a fight we know we can win.
"I'm sure Ward feels he can win the fight. It might even be the kind of fight where if we fight 10 times it might not be 10 to nil for one of us. It might be 5-5, so it's (about who's best) on the night. Who gets it right in the preparation, on the build up and who crosses the line on the evening."
Froch, THE RING's No. 3-rated super middleweight going into Saturday, has no doubt that he will get it right and "cross the line" on fight night.
"I spoke to (trainer) Robert McCracken at length about Andre Ward and we known what we need to do to beat him," he said. "Andre Ward is not a big puncher just to pull out one of his limitations; he's not a banger. So anybody who can't punch against somebody who can bang and who's got a jaw like I've got, they're in trouble because I can just put them on the back foot regardless of what they're doing. I can put pressure on them, make them work (and) hit them hard and often.
"So Ward's got a problem if he feels he can just keep me off with his little pitty patter jab and hold and use his head as a third arm. He's not going to get away with that, especially out of Oakland, where this fight is certainly not goin to take place."
Froch lauded Ward as a worthy opponent but suggested that the American's tournament favorite status is a bit overblown.
"Ward is obviously very good," he said. "He beat Mikkel Kessler in a dubious fight that was very controversial in terms of the way in which the headbutts and the cuts that were opened up (on Kessler's face) early on (were handled by the officials). (Ward) was allowed to get away with certain fouls without being penalized because he was at home.
"Taking that fight away, he's had a couple of decent wins against top-level fighters and he obviously deserves his place in the Super Six finals by beating who he's beaten."