Today I got a chance to sit down and talk with 1 of the rumored fighters on the Sergio Martinez vs. Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. undercards, Wale “Lucky Boy” Omotoso (22-0 with 19 KOs). The 27 year old, Nigerian born welterweight, by way of Australia, will be fighting in Las Vegas for the 1st time September 15th. He gave me some insight on how he started in the sport, how he’s training right now, what was it like fighting in the US for the 1st time, and what he expects for his future at the welterweight division and possibly after.
Omotoso was born in Lagos, Nigeria, 1 of the roughest and toughest cities in the world to grow up in. He actually nicknamed himself “Lucky Boy” because he felt he was lucky to even make it out of that area alive. He has seen people stabbed, shot, jumped, and he and his brother were both involved and had to run with a street gang. His life could have gone a very different way when he was young and he is very grateful to not only have made it out of there all the way to Blackburn, Australia, but to also be able to show off his talents in the ring now.
Even before boxing, Omotoso became good friends with cruiserweight boxer Lateef Kayode, as they were both born in the same city, and both were well known street fighters in the city of Lagos. This was how Omotoso got into boxing. He was a known street fighter, his name got around, and then he went to the National Stadium to see a friend’s friend box when he was only 17 years old in 2002. He told me that in his entire amateur career he won an All African Championship at age 19, and he has only lost 1 fight, for a record of 46-1-1, but it was so long again that he cannot remember the 1 guy to beat him.
I asked him if he’s a guy that studies his opponent or if he rather fight his fight and make the opponent adjust, he replied with, “It depends, if I’ve seen the guy or know him, I may change some things, but if I don’t know much about him, I’ll just fight my fight and adjust later.” I also asked him the effect that his main trainer Freddie Roach has had on him, Omotoso said, “When he’s there it’s great, he’ll let me know if I’m doing something good, right now my assistant trainer, Eric Brown is around most of the time.”
Brown is currently Pauli Malignaggi’s trainer. Omotoso was supposed to be on the Marquez/Rios co-feature back in April. Unfortunately he broke his right hand and was out for 3 months, he just got cleared about 3 weeks ago and he said he actually hits harder now than before.
The injury led me to ask him about if he’s in shape now and the possibility of his next fight in September he says, “I am currently 156lbs, but I can be at 147 in two weeks if needed, I’m always ready to fight.” He spars with big guys such as Peter Quillin, Chavez Jr., Malignaggi, and even heavyweights, so being a name or the bright lights won’t scare him.
However, September 15th will be the biggest PPV event that Lucky Boy has been on, but if you ask him, he has already gone through the excitement stage before. When I asked him about his 1st US fight, he said, “My 1st fight in the US was exciting, I will never forget it, I was aggressive and over excited. Australia was so happy to see me, I’m not usually a guy that gets too excited, but when I went back to Australia, they had to calm me down and bring me back down to earth. When I asked about his personality, “I liken myself to a snake, I come out, strike fast, and go back,” said Omotoso.
Since Omotoso has yet to get that big name or title fight, I asked if he was willing to move up to get a shot, but Omotoso responded, “I don’t want to move until I get a title at 147, there is no reason for me to move for nothing.”
I also asked him about if he had a preference for his next fight, “I don’t call people out, no need for me to pressure anyone, my promoters are good to me,” said Omotoso. Finally, I asked him if he had a message for anyone out there and he just had to say, “I want to thank my fans, and my promoters, Top Rank for signing me a year ago. If it wasn’t for them, I’d still be fighting at home, they brought me to the US.”