After some deliberation Richard Riakporhe reveals he could move away from the British scene in search of world honours and a WBA title fight when he makes his return to the sport after suffering a ‘serious’ hand injury.
The 30-year-old British cruiserweight champion who is managed by Dillian Whyte is currently number 4 in the WBA rankings and has high aspirations since his hard fought performance against Jack Massey which ended in a points victory for the South Londoner back in December.
This weekend Deion Jumah faces Sam Hyde in a final eliminator where the pair will meet for the British belt, with Riakporhe open to facing the winner, but he could also target one of his rivals in the WBA rankings to put himself in line for a world title shot.
Riakporhe speaking to the media has been quoted as saying: “I’m obligated to fight my mandatory for the British title. I’m more than ready to fight whoever,
“I want to test myself against the best in the world.
“I’m fourth in the WBA and at the same time, I’m a prizefighter. If there’s better opportunities in regards to money and to also improve my ranking to get to where I want to be – and that’s a world champion – it only makes sense that I take certain opportunities.”
The undefeated cruiserweight from Walworth with eleven wins on his record refuses to reveal details about his injured right hand out of respect to Massey, but is expected to return to the ring at the back end of the summer.
“A lot of people ask me about the cast. I don’t want to talk about it too much,” he said.
“In boxing, injuries occur, whether it’s breaks or fractures or what have you. When you’re in a fight, you don’t talk about it. You just have to continue fighting. You’re not going to go, ‘I broke my hand, I can’t continue,’ that’s absurd.
“I have the respect for my opponent Jack Massey. I don’t want to talk about it.”
Speaking about the length of the time it would take for the injury to heal, he went onto say: “About three or four months. Yes, it’s a serious injury. It’s a rehabilitation period as well.”
British rival “The Sauce” Lawrence Okolie who is also undefeated in the pro ranks will have his first shot at world title level when he meets Krzysztof Glowacki in the squared circle for the vacant WBO belt, with a date and venue yet to be announced.
Riakporhe admits he is on the side of his countryman and hopes Okolie comes out on top in order to heat up their ongoing rivalry and acknowledges an eventual fight down the line would be even more tastier with two world titles at stake.
“That’s how it could really go down,” he said. “I see us both winning world titles. I believe that he will win that world title against Glowacki. It won’t be easy. Of course I want him to win, just not against me.
“I’m fine with fighters winning. I’m cool with that. Against me, you’re an obstacle. You’re not winning, you’re going down.”
In my personal opinion I believe it would be a smart move for Riakphore to keep building his career and to step up through the levels with the potential to meet Okolie further on down the line.
This would give the opportunity to have one or more word titles at stake and even the possibility of an all British world title unification, something that would benefit both fighters financially and also the chance to grow their reputation and popularity on a wider scale.
Written By Kenny Leavett.