May 19, 2024

Why Esepor is the Next Big Thing in Nigerian Boxing


…To defend WABU title at GOtv Boxing Night on December 26


Nigeria is blessed with raw talents in different sports, one of which is boxing. Though boxing gave Nigeria global recognition – even before the country gained independence, the sport has suffered notable neglect in recent years. Despite the disdain, some talents still manage to breakthrough. One of such is the current West African Boxing Union (WABU) Featherweight Champion, Taiwo Agbaje, popularly known as ‘Esepor’.

The Beginning

The pugilist started his boxing story as a six-year-old sparring with his brother. According to him, Iron Mike Tyson is the best boxer ever, and was his motivation for choosing the trade. His first professional bout was  in March 2018 against Ajobola Adeniran at Police College Ikeja Lagos.

Impressive record

With a record of seven knockouts in fourteen bouts, Esepor remains undefeated in his four years of professional boxing, with 65%-win rate. His list of vanquished opponents include Ghanaian featherweight boxer, Emmanuel “Agogo” Mensah; former African Boxing Union Champion Waidi “Skoro” Usman; Mexico’s Christian Lopez Flores and Honduras’ Jayro Fernando Escobar.

GOtv Boxing Night

Having a steady and reliable platform to showcase your talent is essential to the growth of athletes. With 26 successful editions, GOtv Boxing Night has been a veritable stage for grassroot boxers to showcase their abilities to audiences across Africa. Esepor has since made the competition his stamping ground. At GOtv Boxing Night 16 in 2018, Esepor, then an unknown face on the local scene, was voted best boxer by journalists, taking home Mojisola Ogunsanya Memorial Trophy, after an impressive victory over Tope ‘TP Rock’ Musa.

He later established himself as one of the big names of GOtv Boxing Night by adding two more Mojisola Ogunsanya Memorial Trophies to his cabinet in 2019 and 2020. His World Boxing Federation (WBF) Intercontinental featherweight title bout with Richard Taruc Pumicpic of the Philippines, highlights GOtv Boxing Night 27, holding December 26 at Tafawa Balewa Square in Lagos.

Local boy with foreign touch

In September 2019, Esepor went to the UK to follow his dreams of becoming a world champion. During his stay in Bolton, he trained at the gym owned by Elite boxing promoter, Alex Matvienko. The experience, according to him, was thrilling and eye-opening. He had the luxury of a well-equipped gym and some bouts under his belt in Bolton and Liverpool. The pugilist now carries the status of a London-based boxer whose profile is on a sharp rise.

The big dream

After his impressive victory over Waidi “Skoro” Usman, Esepor disclosed that his lifetime ambition is to become a world champion. “Right now, nobody can stop me here, that is why they call me Esepor. Nobody can take my punches and survive. I want the world title,” he averred. Esepor appears right on track to achieving his dream. His record is appealing to foreign and local opponents. He is no doubt one big hope of another global recognition for Nigeria in the featherweight boxing category.

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