Joseph Parker’s next big fight is officially locked in.
It’s been confirmed the former WBO World Champion will fight Derek Chisora in a huge heavyweight clash on May 1.
The Kiwi boxer is fresh off a hard-fought 12-round decision over long-time amateur nemesis Junior Fa last month that settled an 11-year old rivalry.
A meeting against Chisora was previously scheduled for October 2019 before it fell through at short notice when Parker’s team revealed he was suffering from the after-effects of a spider bite.
The next fight is an opportunity for Parker to get his career back on track after his name suppression lapsed, revealing he had been linked to a court case in which a group of men were convicted of importing methamphetamine. Parker himself was not charged but fought through the courts to keep his name secret.
Parker said he was ready to settle “unfinished business” with Chisora.
“I’m excited to start this new chapter in my career with a new coach and some fresh ideas,” said Parker.
“I’ve settled in and Andy and I are bonding well. Chisora and I have unfinished business and inside the ring one of us will get the job done.
“I am well aware that a win on British soil and on world-wide television will put me in pole position whereas a loss will be catastrophic.I am more than up for the challenge. Bring it on Del Boy.”
Meanwhile, former World Title challenger Chisora was last seen pushing Ukraine’s pound-for-pound star Oleksandr Usyk all of the way in their 12-round battle for the WBO Intercontinental Heavyweight Title.
Unconvinced with Team Parker’s reasons for pulling out in 2019, Chisora has labelled Parker a “chicken” in recent weeks and continued to question whether the Kiwi fighter was up for the challenge.
“We’ve been here before, in 2019 I flew to Vegas to film the ‘Face To Face’ with Parker, I called Haye as soon as I left and told him, ‘This guy isn’t going to get in the ring with me’, I could see the fear in his eyes,” said Chisora.
“Now, second time around I hope he fights, I’m looking forward to the fight, I cannot wait to get back in the ring! I love fighting, it is what I love the most. Good luck to Joseph Parker and his new team, we shall see you for WAR on May 1st!”
Parker’s manager David Higgins said it was exciting to finally have a showdown between the two fighters confirmed.
“I think the fight will be a real fan pleaser. It could be the Heavyweight Fight of the Year,” Higgins said. “You’ve got Chisora who likes to stand and trade and come forward, and then you’ve got Parker who has the speed and the pedigree.
“This fight has got a bit of history and it has been building for a while. It’s fantastic that it’s finally happening. This is a proper 50-50 matchup where the winner could go on to a World Title shot and the loser will go to the scrapheap. Credit to both Parker and Chisora for putting it all on the line.”
Parker and Chisora will collide on a blockbuster night of action that will also see Irish star Katie Taylor defend her Undisputed Lightweight crowns against former amateur rival Natasha Jonas and undefeated WBA Light-Heavyweight World Champion Dmitry Bivol put his Title on the line against Craig Richards.
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