Boxing: What next for Joseph Parker?

By Alex McLeod

Fresh after his knockout victory over Solomon Haumono in Christchurch on Thurday night, Joseph Parker and his management team will reveal who his next opponent is on Tuesday as part of Parker's pursuit for an IBF world title.

Having defeated the former rugby league player convincingly last night to record a 20th win from his 20th professional fight, Parker is set to host a yet-to-be-announced fighter in New Zealand in October, potentially his last fight before he prepares to challenge British boxer Anthony Joshua for the IBF (International Boxing Federation) world title in London.

Duco Events boss Dean Lonergan offered some hints last night about who Parker's opponent in October may be, suggesting it will be a fighter similar in build and style to Joshua.

"He's a substantial unit, it's fair to say. It's something we haven't faced before," Lonergan said.

"The next fight we've got up is preparation for AJ [Anthony Joshua]. We can't wait to get up to London and have our turn with Anthony Joshua.

We can't wait to get this title shot going because I think we're coming home with the title."

Parker will be putting his mandatory challenge at the IBF world title on the line in his fight against the mystery fighter, but the 24-year-old should be brimming with confidence after his 17th knockout victory of his career against Haumono, who, as expected, never really threatened Parker throughout the fight.

"I got the victory, that's always the highlight of the fight," Parker said last night.

According to IBF rules, it is a requirement for an IBF world title holder to fight the mandatory challenger nine months after claiming their title.

Should Parker win his fight in October and maintain his status as mandatory challenger to the IBF world title, he will be due to fight world title holder Joshua on January 9, nine months after the Brit defeated American Charles Martin on April 9.

The IBF is one of the four major international boxing organizations recognised by the International Boxing Hall of Fame (IBHOF), with the other three of which being the World Boxing Association (WBA), the World Boxing Council (WBC), and the World Boxing Organization (WBO).

Parker is currently ranked first in both the IBF and the WBO, fourth in the WBC and eighth in the WBA, with the respective title holders in each organization being Deontay Wilder (WBC), Tyson Fury (WBO and WBA unified), Ruslan Chageav (WBA regular), and Anthony Joshua (IBF).

While Parker is preparing to fight Joshua for the IBF title, Fury is preparing to defend his titles in a highly anticipated rematch with Ukrainian former world champion Wladimir Klitschko.

Fury defeated Klitschko by unanimous decision in November last year in Düsseldorf, Germany to become WBO and unified WBA champion.

The pair are set to fight for a second time in October however, with Fury putting his titles on the line in a rematch of seismic proportions in Manchester, England.

- NZ Herald

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