By Dylan Cleaver in Providence

Joseph Parker's trainer Kevin Barry launched a passionate defence of referee Ricky Gonzalez, who stunned a large crowd when he awarded the heavyweight a TKO in the 10th round against brave Australian Alex Leapai.

Some in the crowd of more than 7000 voiced their displeasure when Gonzalez stopped the fight, despite Leapai indicating he was fine to continue.

Barry wasn't buying it though, saying if anything the fight should have been called earlier.
"We have a lot of brain damage in boxing," Barry said. "We have boxers with blood clots.


"The doc said he'd given him papers for the concussion tests to go to hospital. God that was a lot of punishment. It's OK being tough but you also have to be smart and tough.
"I feel sorry for how Alex is going to feel tomorrow."

Both Parker and Barry emphasised how many shots they'd hit "that tough old man" with. It was said with a mixture of awe and concern.

Following the fight, Leapai made his way to Parker's room where they shared a hug and some kind words. Leapai's face was swollen but his speech seemed clear.

The Parker camp know he will face criticism for not finishing a struggling Leapai earlier but felt there was only so much they could do against a fighter with a head like concrete.

In fact, Barry said his greatest concern was that Parker was going to break his hands looking to force the knockout.

A couple of hours after the fight, as Parker greeted well-wishers back at his Providence hotel, bruises and some swelling was noticeable around his knuckles but his hands were break-free.

"Kevin does a good wrap," Parker said with a smile.

Dylan Cleaver travelled to the US courtesy of Duco