Erick "The Eagle" Ochieng believes it is just a matter of time
before he wins a world title.
The Kenyan born 25-year-old recently defended the English
light-middleweight title for the second time with a stunning fifth
round stoppage of Ryan Toms, but he has set his sights much higher
than this level.
In fact, he's been plotting his route to the top since before he
had his first amateur contest.
"I keep telling people I'm already a world champion I've just
not been crowned yet," Ochieng told HattonBoxing.
"Before I had my first amateur fight I saw a vision of myself
becoming a world champion and that's why I'm so determined because
I know where I'm going and what I want to achieve.
"Some people turn professional just for the sake of boxing, I've
always known I'll be a world champion.
"It's like with driving, it helps when you know where you're
going. If you know you going to come to traffic lights, then a
roundabout before turning left you'll be confident about where
you're going but if you don't know where you're going you'll get
"I know where I'm going because I have a vision."
But the future wasn't always so clear for the affable Stoke
Soon after arriving in the UK from Kenya, Ochieng fell in with
the wrong crowd and if it wasn't for boxing and his faith, his life
could have gone down a completely different path.
"If I didn't have boxing and my lord and saviour Jesus Christ I
would be locked up, career washed up," he said.
"I was a bad boy and I used to fight in the street and I got in
with the wrong people. I wanted to be like my friends and I was on
the wrong path.
"If I'd have carried on I'd have ended up like them. Some of
them got shot, one of them got killed and some of them are in
prison. When I let Christ in my life it changed the way I thought
about things and it made me realise that if I didn't change my ways
I'd have ended up where they were ending up."
With a new outlook on life, Ochieng joined the Haringey Police
Community ABC in Tottenham but soon found that things were much
tougher than he expected.
"I thought I was the baddest boy on the block so I jumped in the
ring to start sparring and it wasn't long until I thought 'wow,
this thing is hard'," he recalled.
"I was getting hit and the more I got hit the more angry I got
but the more angry I got, the more I got hit. It took me a while to
realise that the more you get angry, the more you lose your
discipline. When you lose your temper, everything goes out of the
window. Boxing taught me how to control my temper."
Ochieng, who was also a keen runner and footballer, soon grew to
love boxing training and hasn't looked back since.
He turned professional in the autumn of 2009 and with exception
of one blip against Castleford's Luke Robinson, everything has gone
In January this year he collected his first title as a pro when
he stopped Liverpool's Nick Quigley in a fight of the year
contender to take the vacant English crown and now he's set his
sights on bigger and better things.
"We're probably going to be going for Jamie Cox and the
Commonwealth title next," Erick revealed.
"At the moment the British is tied up. Brian Rose was supposed
to be fighting Sam Webb but that's fallen through and he's going to
fighting Vivian Harris so we've got to look at a different
"I'm waiting on Eddie Hearn [his promoter] to pull the strings
and get the fight together."
Erick also wanted to thank his sponsors Addison Lee and Glen
Insurance for helping his career progress.