George Groves, Chris Eubank Jr. both promise stoppage victory

LONDON -- George Groves and Chris Eubank Jr. both promised to win by stoppage in their super-middleweight showdown on Feb. 17.

The English super-middleweights came face-to-face at a press conference at the Savoy Hotel in London on Wednesday to publicise their semifinal of the World Boxing Super Series (WBSS) -- an eight-man elimination competition launched earlier this year -- at the Manchester Arena.

Tickets quickly sold out within an hour of becoming available on Tuesday but that did not stop the pair of them talking a good fight a few hours later.

"I'm a man of my word and George you will not see the 12th round," said Eubank to his English rival. "George is a world champion but this is my time.

"I'm a different animal to what I was two years ago, one year ago, and George is the same guy."

Groves (27-3, 20 KOs), from west London, is No. 1 seed in the tournament and the only recognised world titleholder within the eight-man bracket.

The 29-year-old brushed side English rival Jamie Cox in four rounds to retain his WBA world super-middleweight title in a first defence on Oct. 14, a week after Eubank (26-1, 20 KOs), 28, from Brighton, impressively knocked out Turkey's Avni Yildirim in the third round.

Eubank believes, despite his lack of experience compared to the champion, the fight has come at the right time for him.

"You're an old man," said Eubank Jr. "You're not the fighter you used to be. You are pretty average, you don't have much speed, your defence is poor and stamina is average. The facts that those parts are lacking from your boxing means you can't compete with me.

"What Carl Froch did to you took something out of you."

Groves captured the WBA belt when he stopped Russia's Fedor Chudinov in the sixth round at Bramall Lane, Sheffield, in May. It was the Londoner's fourth world title attempt after being stopped twice by English rival Froch in 2013 and 2014, before a split points loss to U.S.-based Swede Badou Jack in September 2015.

"He's terrific with a soundbite, but this is different," said Groves. "I used to hear people talk about levels and it used to frustrate me. But I do understand it, sometimes it doesn't matter how well you prepare, there are some people you just can't beat.

"He doesn't have the pedigree. On the night I believe I'm unstoppable and you won't see the 12th round.

"This is his real big fight, definitely at super-middleweight, and he's going to fall short on a lot of categories. Junior is a middleweight and I'm a fully fledged super-middleweight."

This will be Eubank's first world title fight and only his fourth fight as a super-middleweight.

"I'm not a stepping stone, I'm a mountain and you [Groves] are not climbing me," said Eubank Jr., the son of Chris Sr, who held world middleweight and super-middleweight titles in the 1990s.

"I've had many, many big fights. This is probably the biggest fight in terms of profile and this tournament and the hype, but at the end of the day I rise to the occasion. The bigger the fight, the better I perform."

Callum Smith (23-0, 17 KOs), 27, also from England, faces Germany's Juergen Braehmer (49-3, 35 KOs), 39, in the other super-middleweight semifinal -- date and venue to be confirmed -- while there is also a WBSS cruiserweight competition to complete next year too.

The super-middleweight and cruiserweight finals, with the winner lifting the Muhammad Ali trophy and pocketing about $8million (£6million), are due in May or June 2018.