What next for Britian's most explosive pound-for-pound puncher Richard Riakporhe?

Richard Riakporhe lived up to his billing of being Britain’s most explosive pound-for-pound puncher last weekend with a destructive stoppage of London rival Deion Jumah

Jumah was previously unbeaten and well thought of, but Riakporhe was patient and folded his domestic rival with a powerful body shot in round eight.

Jumah could not make the count and Riakporhe recorded a 10th career knockout in just 14 fights.

Riakporhe, who only made his pro debut in 2016, did not have it all his own way though. In fact Jumah was the busier of the two before Riakporhe crumpled him with a stiff right-hand.

Jumah had survived a fourth round in which Raikporhe had floored him with brutal right-hand counter. The Hammersmith fighter struggled to make the count and with only 11 seconds until the bell he clung on until the end of the round.

His fate was only delayed though as Riakporhe's heavy hitting got Jumah out of there four rounds later.

It leaves Raikporhe and his promoter Ben Shalom hunting for his next step.

"Me and my team are going to sit down and we're going to see what options are available and then go for the next route," Riakporhe told Sky Sports News. "We definitely want to bring a title back to Great Britain.

"I would say we'll have two more [fights], maybe back in July and then towards the end of the year. I think realistically it's looking like the end of the year could be the potential title shot."

Lawrence Okolie match-up

Shalom is sure that the 32-year-old is the real deal and Riakporhe has already said he's open to fighting the WBO cruiserweight champion Lawrence Okolie.

"My team are working behind the scenes and they've got a beautiful plan for me. They put people in front of me and I deal with them, it's just that simple," Riakporhe told IFL TV.

"I want all the big fights… It would be massive to fight Okolie at the O2 or something like that, bloody hell, that would be a sell out quickly."

It's hard to see Okolie and Eddie Hearn coming around to that idea with Riakporhe ranked 11 by the WBO. Although it may well drum up significant interest in Britain and a huge payday, it's a huge gamble for Okolie.

Hearn will most likely be looking at a world title unification with the IBF champion, Mairis Briedis, for Okolie up next.

Okolie is a prime example of a Brit stepping up to world level and looking more than comfortable.

'The Sauce', 29, only had 15 fights and had only fought at British and European level before he stunned Krzysztof Glowacki for the WBO world title in March 2021.

The unbeaten Okolie produced his best performance to date to knock out his seasoned opponent after six rounds under Shane McGuigan.

Could Riakporhe follow suit?

There's no doubt he has the punch power to trouble anyone at world level. He struggled to get any real combinations together against southpaw Jumah. But his one-punch power makes him a very dangerous fighter.

Riakporhe is the WBC mandatory challenger and he will surely have his sights set on a world title fight with Ilunga Makubu - the same fighter who had been linked with Canelo Alvarez last year.

WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman has said Riakporhe was in the mix to fight the Congolese champion Makubu (29-2, 25 KOs).

"I think that [Makabu vs Riakporhe] would be a great match for the future," said Sulaiman in November.

WBA champion Arsen Goulamirian (26-0) could also be in the frame for Riakporhe at the end of the year. Interestingly the Brit was unranked by the WBA before Saturday's win over Jumah.

However, he may well have to fight at least once more before he gets a shot at a world title. And one safe passage to the big time may well be a clash with 51-year-old Firat Arslan.

The veteran is ranked six by the WBA and has won his last four fights despite his age, one of which was the WBA international title.

Badou Jack talk

Arslan maybe the stepping stone that Shalom and Raikporhe fancy. Another option would be to tackle former super middleweight champion Badou Jack.

The 38-year-old Swede is no stranger to operating at world level and has fought at light heavyweight. But he is now settled at cruiserweight and moving through the rankings having beaten the little-known Samuel Crossed last time out.

Whoever Riakporhe fights next, a world title shot looks to be in the stars. At 32 Riakporhe will be coming into his peak as a boxer. But he is relatively inexperienced as a fighter.

Opting to finish his studies, Riakporhe only started boxing 19 and made his pro debut less than six years ago.

He does not have many miles on the clock, but Shalom also knows until he throws his man in with the best his potential will remain unknown.

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