It has been nearly two years since Richard Riakporhe stepped into the ring and the ring rust showed as he took time to warm to his task before beating Krzysztof Twardowski, of Poland, at the SSE Arena, Wembley.
The result was a fairly comprehensive win for Riakporhe, the former British cruiserweight champ, 79-72 on the card of Chas Coakley, the referee, but it wasn’t until the final round, when Riakporhe dropped Twardowski with an overhand right, that Riakporhe really shone.
In the main the Londoner was happy to push out the jab and Twardowski’s determination to counterpunch, which meant he hardly ever led off, seemed to make Riakporhe a bit tentative.
Still Twardowski was a solid test and Riakporhe was never in danger of losing, although things did get a bit messy at times.
Riakporhe will be back at the SSE Arena on November 20 when he takes on veteran Nigerian Olanrewaju Durodola,
Germaine Brown got the better of a well-contested English middleweight title eliminator against Jamal Le Doux.
Le Doux came forward throughout and put pressure on Brown, but it was Brown who generally picked the better shots and while there were moments when he stoos his ground and landed some big shots, he never really looked like overwhelming Le Doux.
Referee Lee Every scored it 99-92, which was fair enough, but didn’t really give Le Doux justice for the effort he put in.
Whatever criticism comes trialist referee Sean McAvoy’s way for his stoppage in the Mikael Lawal-Benoit Huber fight, he can rest assured that he did a good job.
McAvoy jumped in to stop Huber, from Switzerland, midway through the third round of their cruiserweight fight after taking a huge right hand. While Huber protested long and hard, McAvoy actually stopped Lawal taking a free shot at him when he was defenseless. The first job of a referee is to protect a boxer – he did that.
Huber had a very bad habit of dropping his hands every time he threw a punch. That he was generally aggressive, this became pretty obvious by the third round. So, midway through the round, as Huber missed with an ambitious right he was countered with an overhand bomb from Lawal.
The shot seemed to send Huber’s eyes into the back of his head and his hands dropped by his side, leaving himself wide open to any Lawal follow up. Fortunately for Huber, McAvoy intervened.
Middleweight Linus Udofia moved through the gears nicely to stop Albania’s Xhuljo Vrenozi in the third of their scheduled ten-rounder.
Udofia took his time against an opponent who switched sides and dived in from awkward angles. But he put together a concerted attack in the third, rocking Vrenozi several times before the towel was thrown in.
Razor Ali remained unbeaten as he claimed a 60-54 win over Stefan Nicolae at super-bantamweight. It was all one-way traffic, with Ali, who lived homeless on the streets of London after fleeing Iran, setting a strong pace throughout.