On the coast in Ghana is the neighbourhood of Bukom. Situated in Jamestown Accra
this deprived community produces Ghana’s fighters. Jamestown was named after the fort built by the British to hold slaves due to be shipped off to the Americas.
This tiny community has produced more boxing world champions per square metre than any other place on earth. Some believe that generations of fishing has eventually developed genetics most suitable for this work. Bodies that can cope with high intensity work with little rest over a prolonged period of time. Boxing demands the same. This combined with limited employment opportunities gives boys little choice.
Fish or fight.
In 2013 I searched out and met the Ghanaian lightweight boxer Richard Commey. At the time he was the African champion and had a perfect record of 17 fights and 17 wins all by way of knock out. Over the last 3 years I have worked closely with Richard. On his last outing in September 2016 he stepped into the ring with a record of 24 wins from 24 fights. This fight was for the World Title. He boxed an American in America with two American Judges. Richard suffered his first loss via a split decision. Sometimes you are fighting the judges too.
He will fight for the World Title again one day soon and I will be there.
Richard Commey gives hope to many in Ghana. Hope that one can find a better future.