By Keith Idec
Now that Joseph Parker has overcome one unbeaten heavyweight from England, his team has its sights set on a bigger British threat.
According to London’s Daily Mirror, representatives for New Zealand’s Parker and England’s Anthony Joshua are already discussing a title unification fight for next summer. The Daily Mirror reported for Monday’s editions that a Joshua-Parker clash is being targeted for July at London’s Wembley Stadium.
Joshua’s last appearance at Wembley Stadium – an unforgettable back-and-forth, 11th-round stoppage of former champion Wladimir Klitschko – drew a capacity crowd of roughly 90,000 to the huge outdoor venue.
A fight against Parker is dependent upon Joshua beating Bulgaria’s Kubrat Pulev (25-1, 13 KOs) on October 28 at Principality Stadium in Cardiff, Wales. More than 70,000 tickets already have been sold for the Joshua-Pulev card.
Pulev, who has lost only to Klitschko, is the mandatory challenger for Joshua’s IBF title. The 27-year-old Joshua (19-0, 19 KOs) also owns the IBO and WBA championships.
The 25-year-old Parker (24-0, 18 KOs) remains the WBO champion thanks to a controversial majority-decision victory over England’s Hughie Fury (20-1, 10 KOs) on Saturday night at Manchester Arena in Manchester, England. Judges John Madfis and Terry O’Connor scored the fight for Parker by the same big margin (118-110), but the third judge, Rocky Young, had it even (114-114).
Fury was the mandatory challenger for Parker’s title. With that mandated defense behind him, Parker is looking forward to challenging Joshua.
“He’s a good champion,” Parker said, “but I’m sure I can bring out his weaknesses.”
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.