Boxing is one of the biggest challenging sports around the world. A combat sport that’s common with the Olympic and Commonwealth Games, but for Richard Riakporhe it was completely different.
As a youth, he wondered the streets of London in hope to find acceptance, respect, admiration and love and his one dream was to become a professional footballer. Richard says; he went from playing football with his brother to fame, women and being powerful.
From around the age of 12 Richard’s life dramatically chanced, after getting himself involved in the street life for about 10 years, which led him to find pain and paranoia. After getting into trouble with the police and being in prison, he finally realised this was not the life he wanted to pursue.
In addition Richard suffered a traumatic near – death experience, he was stabbed in the chest at the age of 15, but that still didn’t stop him luring the streets. He say’s “it’s hard to resist and as a result kept getting into trouble”. After my cousin got shot it made him realise how little he valued his own life.
One of the most ultimate life changing moments, which I would call it “my most life-saving moment” was being gifted the most precious and valuable thing in the world a “child”. It gave me a bigger purpose in life and having a child gave me a huge sense of responsibility, that made me understand I can’t get into trouble anymore – I needed to be the role model for my child.
I decided to pursue the career in the sport of boxing and attended his local gym, to see if he had the stamina. He started amateur contents in 2009 and his boxing coaches realised Richard had decent potential and showing a very powerful punch, a 70 percent knockout ratio and within two years became a national champion.
Boxing has changed my life, provided me with a strong mental attitude, which has benefitted me hugely in the field of boxing. This sport kept me focused and on the right track, it gave me purpose and kept me occupied. Having to compete two weeks to a month kept me engaged, I was literally too tiered after training to hang around with bad influences.
Richards says my ultimate dream was to fight in the Olympics, but instead went on to study a marketing communications and advertising degree at Kingston University, which was hard because he had to balance his time between boxing and studying. Both needed massive commitment, but realized he could graduate in 2015 and still be young enough to keep boxing.
After graduating Richard pursued his passion and career in becoming a professional boxer and now gives talks to many institutes, His influence and dream is to bring positivity to all the people around the world about his experiences. Richard say’s his ultimate goal is to become the world champion he states; I will achieve this with every fiber inside me to work hard towards that ultimate goal until it’s complete. Richard’s determination show’s you can achieve anything if you put your mind to it.
If you want to see Richard in action he will be fighting Chris Billam-Smith at the 02 in London on the 20th July and you can also catch it live on Sky Sports Box Office.