Jerome Campbell: I need to raise my game if I'm going to turn professional
PUBLISHED: 10:00 06 October 2016
Kilburn boxer Jerome Campbell knows he needs to make his mark in the amateur ranks in the next few years if he is to turn professional in the future.
The 25-year-old, who has won 14 out of his 20 fights to date, left Finchley ABC in the summer due to their decision to break away from England Boxing, joining the highly reputable Islington BC instead.
And Campbell followed up his gold medal success at the Haringey Box Cup in June with victory in the London Development Championship final at the weekend, booking a spot in the regional finals as a result.
He told the Times: “I had to make the hard decision to leave Finchley due to their decision to leave England Boxing.
“Remaining at Finchley wasn’t an option as I wouldn’t have been able to box for England or Great Britain or enter the championships that are recognised by England Boxing.
“We departed on great terms and I respected their decision, but to ensure I could still compete in the top national championships and tournaments I chose Islington as my next step.
“They have welcomed me and the other five Finchley boxers who decided to stay with England Boxing with open arms – it already feels like home.”
Campbell continued: “I turned 25 in May so know the next few years are crucial to my development and I really need to make a big impression on the amateur scene to give me the best options for turning professional in the future.
“If GB ever came calling I would most definitely consider staying amateur, but at the moment my mind is solely focused on making it as a professional in this sport.”
Campbell made his Islington debut in the London semi-finals of the National Development Championship against Lewis Frimpong on September 24 – the man he beat via a unanimous decision in the Box Cup final.
And, while the fight appeared to be a lot closer than their first clash, Campbell yet again reigned victorious in the same fashion.
On Sunday, Campbell followed that performance up with another victory as he became London champion, after a very close affair against IQ Boxing Academy’s Dennis Wahome in their Under-60kg, Class B bout.
Both boxers landed heavy shots during the bout, which came as a surprise as Campbell expected “more of a chess match”, given the tactical acumen of the two men in the ring.
He added: “It was a very close fight against Dennis. In the end my hand was raised and I won courtesy of a split decision, which I felt was fair considering how close the fight was.
“I’ve only lost once this year and I truly believe I am improving as each day goes. This is a true reflection of my decision to really dedicate my life to boxing and take the sport seriously.
“With the continued support from my sponsors Pulsin and Cimac, along with the endless training I do with my club-mates, at Islington. I know I’ve got what it takes.
“I really believe in myself and I think that’s a huge factor in regards to a sport like boxing.”