James DeGale shocked by Caleb Truax in IBF super-middleweight title upset

• British fighter DeGale was overwhelming favourite but loses on points
• DeGale admits he must ‘go back to the drawing board’

Even in his worst nightmares, James DeGale could not have imagined his first fight on British soil in three years playing out like this. In front of a near sell-out crowd in east London, the 31-year-old was meant to retain his IBF super middleweight title with something to spare against the American Caleb Truax. Instead he ended the evening defeated via a majority points decision and ultimately dethroned and dejected, his face red from a beating. He has to contemplate where his career goes now.

Certainly talk of unifying the division can be shelved; that contest against the WBA champion, David Benavidez, next spring is a practical non-starter and the hope of then going on to face the WBC champion and bitter rival George Groves is a distant dream. DeGale has made no secret of his desire to get in a ring again with Groves after his points defeat to the 29-year-old in May 2011, but as he admitted himself he must first “go back to the drawing board” and figure out how he was undone here. Certainly Groves has no desire for a rematch judging by his tweet after the judges’ scores of 114-114, 115-112 and 116-112 in Truax’s favour had been announced. “Call it a day mate, you ain’t got no more,” he wrote, no doubt with a grin spread across his face.

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