- BOXXER Chief Ben Shalom Confirms Email Was Sent To Jai Opetaia’s Promoters
- Shalom, However, Claims It Was Somebody Else In His Company Who Sent It
- The Concern On The Riakporhe Side Was That Opetaia Didn’t Know The Offer
Earlier this month, Richard Riakporhe withdrew from the purse bids for his mandated fight with Ring Magazine and IBF Cruiserweight champion Jai Opetaia.
Riakporhe gave his mandatory position and is now understood to be targeting a clash with the WBA champion, France’s Arsen Goulamirian.
Eddie Hearn, co-promoter of Opetaia, claimed that BOXXER emailed Opetaia’s other co-promoter Mick Francis (Tasman Fighters) to revive an Opetaia-Riakporhe bout after withdrawing from the bids to pursue another world title opportunity.
“We actually had some fun and games on it this morning because I saw Ben Shalom’s interview yesterday where he said, ‘We pulled out of the purse bids on the day because we had another world championship opportunity.'”
“They emailed Mick Francis from Tasman Fighters today saying ‘Don’t tell Eddie Hearn we’re contacting you but would you like to make the Richard Riakporhe fight on September 30?’.”
Tasman Fighters reached out to NoSmokeSport.com to confirm that an email was sent by BOXXER but did not clarify the specifics.
Ben Shalom Clarifies Why The Email Was Sent
“It didn’t come from me”, Shalom said to Boxing News, “The main concern from our side was from seeing Opetaia’s comments, did he actually know the numbers that were on the table?”
The BOXXER CEO has claimed that he did not personally send the email but rather that it was somebody else affiliated with the company.
Shalom also stated that communication was made because they were unsure if the offer from BOXXER to Opetaia’s team was being fed back to Opetaia himself insinuating that if the Australian knew the financial details he may be incentivised to take the fight in the UK with BOXXER/Sky Sports.
“Did he know the offer that was on the table? (There was) concern from someone who works with us that maybe Opetaia didn’t actually know what was on the table for it.”