Billam-Smith vs Riakporhe Predictions: Challenger to win in front of adoring Selhurst crowd

 | Wednesday 12th June 2024, 21:12pm

Wednesday 12th June 2024, 21:12pm

crystal palace selhurst park scaled

There's a huge domestic dust-up taking place on Saturday, as Chris Billam-Smith and Richard Riakporhe rematch, following the latter's split decision win back in 2019. Since then 'CBS' has captured the WBO Cruiserweight World Championship belt but now he goes into the lions den, taking on Riakporhe in front of his own fans at Selhurst Park, home of his beloved Crystal Palace. 

The bout will be screened live on Sky Sports, with ring-walks expected around 10pm. So, without further ado, here is my Billam-Smith vs Riakporhe Prediction... 

Billam-Smith vs Riakporhe Betting Tips

  • Riakporhe to win via KO/TKO @ 6/4

There's nothing quite like an all-British grudge match and this one ticks all the boxes...

History? Tick. The two men faced-off early in their careers in July 2019 at the O2 Arena on the Dillian Whyte vs Oscar Rivas undercard, with both men undefeated at the time.

Riakporhe grabbed the decision 97-92 and 95-94 on two of the judges cards, with one man scoring it 96-93 for Billam-Smith. The result has been heavily disputed since and this will be a perfect chance for both men to settle the score once and for all.

Titles? Tick. Since the loss to Riakporhe, CBS has taken his career to a new level, winning the British, Commonwealth and European titles, before winning the ultimate one, winning a majority decision over WBO world champ Lawrence Okolie, in front an adoring crowd at the Vitality Stadium, home of AFC Bournemouth.

Riakporhe worked himself up to mandatory for Cruiserweight slayer and former IBF champion Jai Opetaia but that fight didn't work out for one reason or another. Now, he has another world title in his sights, against potentially a much more beatable opponent.

Where and when is the fight taking place?

The fight is taking place at Selhurst Park, London on Saturday, June 15 and will be broadcast live and exclusively on Sky Sports in the UK.

The event is a Ben Shalom promotion for BOXXER, with the undercard expected to start at 18:00 and the main event ring walk due to take place at around 22:00 UK time.

What does the full fight card look like?

  • MAIN EVENT: Chris Billam-Smith vs. Richard Riakporhe - WBO cruiserweight title
  • Isaac Chamberlain vs. Jack Massey
  • Ben Whittaker vs. Ezra Arenyeka
  • Dan Azeez vs. Hrvoje Sep
  • Francesca Hennessy vs. Dorota Norek
  • Devorn Miller vs. Edwin Mosquera
  • Mitchell Frearson vs. TBA

(subject to change)

Billam Smith vs Riakporhe Fight Odds

*You can find all the latest Billam-Smith vs Riakporhe markets by clicking the link above. 

The champion Billam-Smith is the 19/10 outsider, with the challenger Riakporhe a heavy 4/9 favourite. The draw is available to back at 16/1, if you fancy this fight to be a really close one to score for the judges.

What's been said?

"I relish the pressure and being the underdog. Myself and Richard are the last two remaining British Cruiserweights and I've just got to get over the line.

I'm a much better fighter than I was last time, that's for sure, and I'm a lot better than anyone he's faced!

I'm a dangerous man, ask my sparring partners, ask Lawrence Okolie..."

Chris Billam-Smith

"I feel like this is destiny, this is my time. If Chris remembers back to how he felt before Okolie, this is how I feel right now. I'm willing to do anything to get the job done.

I love doing this man, I feel like a Gladiator!"

Richard Riakporhe

Riakporhe to win via KO/TKO @ 6/4

Sadly for CBS, I can only see this fight going one way.

Just like his compatriot Joe Joyce, I have been waiting for his career to come to a abrupt halt and I think this fight will be the one it happens in.

Like the Juggernaut, Billam-Smith is incredibly one-dimensional and easy to tag. He has been badly hurt in previous fights and while there is no denying that he is a proud, brave fighter, his slow, lumbering awkward style is an easy one to fight against for a quality operator.

Obviously, we've no idea yet if that man is Richard Riakporhe and whilst he may come up asking against the other Cruiser kingpins, I feel he has comfortably enough to beat Billam-Smith again.

Five straight knockouts and 13 in his 17 fights to date show a man with heavy hands and able to get the job done. With a fervent Selhurst Park support at his back, I think he can knock out the reigning champ and move on to bigger showdowns down the line.

Richard Riakporhe ko tko 6-4

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