Derrick was born and raised in South East London, Peckham and is the fifth born of six children. Aged 15, having been excluded from school thirteen times and on the verge of being permanently expelled due to anger management issues, he turned to Boxing in 2009 after it was was recommended to him by a friend who said it would be a great way to channel his energy positively. He quickly fell in love with the sport and repeatedly states “God led to me Boxing which ultimately saved my life, the sport has taught me so much, the biggest lesson being self-discipline, it’s positively shaped my character and kept me out of trouble”. He states, “Boxing went from a hobby, to a passion and now it’s a lifestyle”. Convinced by his parents to focus on finishing his GCSE’s and A-Levels first. He would wait four years to have his first competitive bout aged 19 in 2013 for Phoenix ABC in Nottingham, where he attended Trent University to study Business Management.
Overcoming various injuries and setbacks, in a short couple of years he found himself the East Midlands Champion, in 2014 and the proud holder of the BUCS National Championship two years running, in 2015 and 2016. He was selected to train with the England Boxing squad in early 2016 after receiving positive feedback from the England coaches after attending an open talent day. After reaching out to the Nigerian Boxing Committee in early 2015, stating his intention to represent them at the 2015 All-African Games, he would officially receive a call up from the national head coach Tony Konyegwachie in early 2016, to attend a selection camp for the African Olympic Qualifiers for the Rio 2016 Games. He would later pass on this opportunity feeling that it ‘had come too early’ and would concentrate on completing his Sports Psychology Master’s degree.
He would later suffer two consecutive injuries in 2016 and 2017 would begin in similar frustrating fashion with numerous matches being cancelled due to opponents withdrawing for various reasons, as a result he would only manage to have one amateur bout in over a year. After such a frustrating period, Derrick had become disillusioned and uninterested in Amateur Boxing and had set his sights on the Pro ranks, but he still felt relatively unfulfilled as an Amateur by his own expectations. He believed that his relatively short amateur career, dominated by injuries and setbacks, hadn’t gone the way he planned, despite winning two national titles and receiving a national call up. He states that he aimed “to have at least 50-60 amateur bouts, attempt to qualify for the 2018 Commonwealth and 2020 Olympic games and then turn professional, but I believe that was not the path God wanted for me”.
Derrick would eventually turn Professional in 2017 under the tutelage of his coaches’, former professional boxers Barrington Brown, Mark Howell, and boxing manager Jimmy Gill all believing that his fighting style was better suited to the pro ranks. He would make his pro debut in December of that year starting his career with a dominant unanimous points victory. He aims to become a multiple world champion and then retire a Legend to the sport of Boxing. He states that most importantly “I want to show the world that with God anything is possible”.
Osaze is married and a devout Christian who regularly attends church and was ordained as a Minister in March 2018 within the Youth Ministry of God’s Vineyard Church, Nottingham. This would birth the nickname ‘The Punching Preacher’ given to him my his manager Jimmy Gill. He believes that “without God I would not be the person that I am today and most importantly, I would not be Boxing”.
He gained a B.A. (Hons) in Business Management and a MRes in Sport & Exercise Psychology at Nottingham Trent University. This is where he would meet his wife, also from London and both would eventually decide to relocate to Nottingham.
Osaze calls himself a sports fanatic who enjoys watching and attending sporting events. He supports Manchester United and grew up playing various sports and representing his secondary school in football, Basketball and Rugby. He is a qualified football coach who has worked with Tottenham Hotspur, Millwall FC and abroad in Canada.
Osaze is extremely passionate about the Youth and is the Director and Founder of AIM Youth, an alternative education provider who deliver programmes to young people with the aim to inspire and motivate the young people to maximise their potential and achieve their ambitions.