In a time in British boxing when tantalizing clashes and real 50/50 fights are few and far between there is a young Cruiserweight prospect banging the drum for a real fight. Deion Jumah (13-0 KO 7) is banging the drum for a fight with British Cruiserweight champion Richard Riakporhe (11-0 KO 8).
A fight between the pair would be welcomed in a time when these types of clashes don’t come around often. To be fair to both men they have fought some solid British competition so far, the champion holds wins over the likes of Jack Massey, Chris Billam-Smith and Tommy McCarthy, whereas Jumah holds wins over the likes of Wadi Camacho and Sam Hyde.
“I haven’t heard anything from Riakporhe or his team, but of course it’s a fight I want, and I want it now. I just want the fight signed and sealed so I can focus on it.”
Despite this obvious choice of a fight, Jumah claims he is worried that the clash won’t happen for different reasons.
“I’m scared that the fight might not happen for whatever reason, whether that’s because he vacates or because he says he wants to go World level, but it is a fight I want, and I want it soon.”
Jumah does feel like he beats Riakporhe and has seen a few holes in his game to make him very confident for the potential clash with the highly touted Matchroom prospect.
“I see an absolute boxing clinic and a late stoppage for me of course. I think he shows a lot of weaknesses, he doesn’t have much confidence in his boxing skills or his conditioning, he hates being hated, absolutely hates it.”
Jumah believes that despite Riakporhe trying to work on things in his last fight he reverted back to his old style and that major weaknesses were shown.
“I did see his last fight, in the first two rounds they’d been working on things like his shape and his jab but it became very scrappy, a lot of holding.
“I find his boxing still very immature, just the things he does and the decisions he makes, as well as he hits, because he is a very hard hitter, he is the worse finisher you’ll ever see, he’s not composed with it and doesn’t know how to finish an opponent and with me, you’ll only ever get one chance you’re never going to get it again.”
Deion believes he has the skill and knowledge that will help him beat Richard, he believes he can punch, defend and box against him without being intimidated.
“It’ll be interesting to see him against me, someone who can actually defend, which I can, and someone who can also hit, because I can but someone who can also box, will be interesting to see what he does then.
“Massey was a little bit intimidated in that last fight so it will also be interesting to see someone who isn’t intimidated so it’s a fight he should take.”
Deion does concede that he doesn’t have as much one-punch power as Riakporhe but does feel like he can set up the shots to knockout anybody.
“Yeah, I do feel like I could land on Richard, do I think I have as much one punch power as him? No, I don’t but I’m capable, if I get you clean if I set up the shot correctly I can knockout anybody.”
With fears of the Riakporhe fight not happening, Jumah feels that a fight with another Riakporhe opponent should be the next logical step.
“I really want Richard but if I don’t get him, it’s all about the British title, all these fights will happen, I’ve fought Chris in the amateurs, beat him in the amateurs, so I’m sure he’ll want to avenge that loss he’s the Commonwealth champion so if the fight with Richard doesn’t happen I think that should be the next fight.”
Jumah does believe that Billiam-Smith is a quality fighter but lacks the mental fortitude to win the big fights.
“Chris is someone throughout his career who when it really matters, he’s a good fighter, but like ABA finals or a big event like the fight against Riakporhe he always loses.
“I think he’s a better fighter than Richard but he’s missing something, call it the it factor or whatever, Chris will not beat me I’ve got all confidence in that, I’ve sparred him plenty and I know what he’s got and yes I think he’s a very good fighter but I think I’m just levels above him talent-wise.”
Deion himself is coming off a big win in January away in Manchester against Sam Hyde, however, he wasn’t pleased with his performance.
“The actual performance, if you know how I fight and you watch me fight, I don’t usually fight like that, we did something different for this fight, the main thing was to not give Sam any momentum and not give him any belief.
“Usually what I do I’m a boxer fight, I hit I back off, hit move, so the plan was to meet Sam in the center and give as good as I got hoping he’d tire and my boxing skills would come in late and that’s what happens, It’s a win I value for the way we pulled off the game plan and for how tough of a fighter he is, I do really respect him.”
The unbeaten Jumah does believe a move onto the World stage is beckoning in the near future.
“I want to beat Richard for the British title, defend that a couple of times and then I’ll move to World level, I’m not in a total rush but I understand I am 30 now and it is time to get a move on.”
Jumah believes that he has picked up bits from three legends of the sport that have influenced his boxing style.
“Manny Pacquiao, Marvin Hagler, and Evander Holyfield, I don’t think I fight exactly like them, but I’ve taken bits from each of them and it’s not even in terms of technique sometimes it’s in things like heart or the way they approach a fight or their game plans against different fighters.”
“For example, I really like Holyfield's heart and tenacity and his warrior spirit and it’s something I hope to take into my fights, I really like when he went to Heavyweight and was boxing bigger opponents and was still able to outbox these bigger opponents and when you’re a small Cruiserweight like myself it’s something that I’ve got to do.”
And Jumah also believes that Clubber Lang would be an easy night's work, well an easier night's work than Ivan Drago.
“Rocky beat Clubber Lang because he had to develop quick feet, I can do that, Rocky against Ivan Drago he had to build this warrior spirit, he had to walk through a crazy amount of shots, crazy belief and crazy amounts of training in Russia in the cold.
For me it’ll be an easy night's work beating Clubber Lang, I can do that, I can have fast feet and stick to a game plan, I think you’d seriously have to go to the well to beat Ivan Drago, I think fighting Drago would take a few years off your career so I’ll take Clubber.”
One thing is certain, Jumah wants the big fights and with his performances so far it would be hard to deny this London Cruiserweight talent the opportunity to showcase his unbelievable talent and potential to the masses.