Stoke Newington boxer Erick ‘The Eagle’ Ochieng is adamant that he will become a world champion, despite suffering a close defeat in his last fight on Saturday.
The 23-year-old lost on points to Luke ‘Lionheart’ Robinson at York Hall in Bethnal Green, but he is confident that the experience will only make him stronger.
The light-middleweight, who was undefeated in his previous five fights, said that he proved he was the better fighter on the night, despite the judges’ scoring the fight 39-38 in favour of Robinson – a decision that was met by jeers from the crowd.
“I won the fight but I didn’t get the decision,” he explained. “He threw a lot of punches but none of them landed and I think the judges called it on aggression rather than quality of punches – I threw more of them.
“The first round he started at a high pace and I was a bit shocked by that. I lost that round but in the second, third and fourth round, there is no doubt that I won them.
“I will put it down as a good experience and I am happy that kind of thing happened now rather than when I am fighting for a title.”
The fight had been scheduled as a six-round contest but on the night was changed to four rounds, which Ochieng feels affected his performance.
“My plan was to break him down in the later rounds and knock him out,” he said. “Four rounds is a short sprint. I had trained for six, eight rounds and was in very good condition but by the fourth he was tired and ready to go.
“If it had gone to five or six rounds I would have knocked him out.”
After the fight it was confirmed that Ochieng, who moved to England from Kenya in 1999, and has lived in Stoke Newington for six years, will get a rematch in the next couple of months. However, The Eagle already has his sights set on higher goals.
Ochieng has been named as a possible contender for the vacant Southern Area title and he is confident it will be the first of many titles in his career.
He said: “We are waiting for the British Boxing Board to get back to us because they are the ones who choose who fights and we expect to be fighting in May in Brentwood.
“I don’t really know who I am going to be up against and to be honest I am ready to beat whoever is front of me.
“After that I will get a couple of fights under my belt, some more experience, then fight for the British title and then start knocking on the door of Golden Boy Promotions for a world title.
“I know that this loss is a little bump on the road to higher things. This has just made me stronger and preparing me for things that will come in the future.”