Frank Sanchez is more than willing to fight Joseph Parker next.
When Sanchez learned Junior Fa asked for much more money for their all-New Zealand heavyweight showdown than Parker’s handlers think he is worth, Sanchez made it clear he would oppose Parker for less money than Fa sought. According to David Higgins, Parker’s manager, Fa’s team requested a “ridiculous” amount of money to box the former WBO champion on an undetermined date in Auckland.
“I am happy to step in for Junior Fa and fight Joe Parker,” Sanchez told BoxingScene.com. “I won’t price myself out because I know I will win. No disrespect to Parker, but I would win every round of the fight and he would not lay a glove on me.”
The unbeaten Cuban contender easily out-boxed Philadelphia’s Joey Dawejko in his last fight, a 10-rounder FOX televised March 7 from Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The 27-year-old Sanchez (15-0, 11 KOs, 1 NC) defeated Dawejko (20-8-4, 11 KOs) decisively on the scorecards of judges Ken Ezzo (100-90), Julie Lederman (100-90) and Kevin Morgan (98-92).
“I want to prove I am the best heavyweight in the world, and I have targeted the WBO championship,” said Sanchez, who is trained by Eddy Reynoso. “I am ready to fight anyone and prove I am the best. A win over Joe Parker would put me in line for a world title fight, and that is all that interests me.”
Sanchez is the WBO’s 11th-ranked contender for Anthony Joshua’s title.
The 28-year-old Parker (27-2, 21 KOs), who is ranked second by the WBO, lost the WBO title to Joshua by unanimous decision in their 12-round title unification fight in March 2018 at Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales. The 30-year-old Fa (19-0, 10 KOs) is ranked sixth by the WBO.
Higgins was taken aback by Fa’s financial demands, especially since the sum was more than Parker would’ve earned for their fight.
“We’re talking 10 or 20 times his biggest purse ever,” Higgins told Sky Sports last week. “Parker would have been willing to fight for less than Fa [requested], and Parker is a former world champion. That’s called pricing yourself out. Fa was looking for far too much, for where they’re at. I guess it’s a mark of respect for Joseph Parker. They are worried about what would happen, frankly.
“Their camp had made noises about fighting Joseph Parker, but they should back up their words. … Fa would get his biggest-ever payday by several multiples by fighting Parker, but their demands were stratospheric, given the current circumstances. I think let’s just give it time, and meanwhile we’ll be assessing other options.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.