Chris Billam-Smith faces old rival Richard Riakporhe in London in June

Chris Billam-Smith defends WBO cruiserweight title in rematch against Richard Riakporhe

Chris Billam-Smith has his next fight confirmed against old rival Richard Riakporhe on June 15 at Selhurst Park Stadium in London, England. The pair first met in July 2019 at O2 Arena, where the latter took the win by split decision after 10 rounds.

The rematch is scheduled for 12 rounds. Billam-Smith’s WBO cruiserweight title is on the line.

In his previous outing last December, Chris Billam-Smith (19-1, 1 3) stopped Mateusz Masternak in eight rounds and secured the 10th win in a row. Making his first ring appearance for the year and the second title defense, the 33-year-old native of Epsom, England looks to avenge his sole career defeat.

“I’m looking forward to giving the Bournemouth fans an away day to remember with an explosive performance, live on Sky Sports,” Billam-Smith said. “Richard is a good fighter, but I’ve improved hugely since we last met and he’s going to be in for a terrible night at Selhurst Park. The WBO belt is coming back with me to Bournemouth.”

Unbeaten Richard Riakporhe (17-0, 13 KOs) is coming off the win by TKO in the second round against Dylan Bregeon last November. London’s 34-year-old also fights for the first time in 2024 and makes his first attempt to become champion.

“My time has come,” Riakporhe said. “The countdown is on. I’m the runaway ‘Midnight Train’ that you cannot stop and it’s the end of the line for Chris Billam-Smith. I can’t wait to knock Chris out and take his title. I’ve beaten him once and I’m ready to do it again. This time it’s not going to the judges. He’s going to be out cold on the canvas and the world title is going to be staying in South London.

“It’s going to be an incredible feeling to fight at Selhurst Park in front of the Palace fans and to be part of a special moment for the club celebrating 100 years since the stadium opened. I’m proud to be from South London and be affiliated with a club like Crystal Palace. The support of the club and the fans means everything to me. I’m going to repay that support with a devastating performance on June 15th.”

The bouts featured on Billam-Smith vs Riakporhe 2 undercard are expected to be confirmed shortly.

The event airs live on Sky Sports in the UK and Peacock in the U.S.

Parviz Iskenderov
Parviz Iskenderov is a former Muay Thai fighter, sports manager and editor at FIGHTMAG.

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