The unification showdown between Joseph Parker and Anthony Joshua (AJ) scheduled for March 31, has taken an interesting twist. Joesph Parker is downplaying Joshua’s preparation, for the monster unification fight in Cardiff.
Parker and his trainer Kevin Barry have disparaged AJ’s efforts, with Parker saying that he doesn’t understand why AJ seems to tire off so fast. Parker added that Joshua seems to be more focused on “new training” which “ looks really hard,” arguing that Joshua’s team still need to “work on a few things” if they are determined to pin him down.
On his part, Parker’s trainer Kevin Barry downplayed Joshua’s training. Saying that the sophisticated techniques he (Joshua) is applying only leave him more worn out and a weaker fit for Parker.
Barry observed almost lamentably that Joshua is always struggling to fight in the later rounds, sentiments that have been meted by boxing observers especially after his fight with Carlos Takam, where he seemed to significantly slack after his 10th round.
Parker’s Trainer Has His Say
Speaking to Sky Sports, Barry expressed confidence that Parker(whom he fondly refers to as Joe) will be raising his game far much into the later rounds.
Warning that it would be a catastrophic mistake for Joshua to slow down. Parker, on the other hand, underlined that he has prepared his body appropriately for the fight and will be ready to make a 12- round face-off if need be.
According to Parker, the training has gone well so far, and everything is working to plan for the face-off at Principality Stadium, Cardiff. As if to reassure himself and his fans of the importance of the oncoming match.
Parker stated that to him it would be just like any other fight, saying that he will pull out an A-plus performance.
Of course, AJ is not taking it all lying down. In reply to Parker’s comments, Joshua said that his remarks do not threaten him any single bit. “ You can’t really take in what someone says if you don’t respect him.”
World Titles On The Line
26-year old Parker is the WBO heavyweight titleholder, while Joshua is the WBA and IBF titleholder. Their forthcoming showdown is expected to be a battle of the Titans.
Parker has long exhibited interest in squaring it off with Joshua, and he will be using this match to prove that AJ has not been on his list of favoured opponents for nothing.
Out of the last six fights that Parker has boxed, his somewhat lean muscle has played to his advantage, at least in four of the matches. According to WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder,a slender muscle is sometimes an excellent asset.
Wilder said that Parker’s physique gives him the flexibility he requires. Parker and his trainer Kevin Barry are working to see him lose up to 4kgs so that he is round 108kg by the time of the match.
Over the past couple of weeks, Parker’s training has been focused on body weight, recuperating sessions and generally helping the body to regain from pressure.
While Parker is undertaking his regimen in Las Vegas, Joshua is sweating it out at Sheffield’s English Institute of Sport.
Although trash-talk between the two champions has generally been on the low scale. Neither of them is letting intimidation take them down before the fight does. Tough talk though has characterised exchanges between the two camps, with Parker’s trainer terming him as a “deadly finisher.”
Barry guaranteed fans that the fight will precisely be over when Parker gets Joshua on the ground.
Even as Parker prepares for the ride, AJ’s 20-0 (all knockouts)record has placed him in favour of the boxing fraternity and the British media. He will have a substantial task challenging the evidently rejuvenated and refined New Zealander.
Parker, on the other hand, had a slightly quiet year in 2017 and the Kiwi didn’t pull out performances of the kind that threw him into international limelight in the last three years. He too will be seeking to redeem himself.
Prizes aside, the fight is expected to see both boxers put their best foot forward given that this is the first heavyweight unification fight in eight years.
Coach Kevin Barry gave an interesting perspective saying that Joshua’s team insisted on a rematch clause on the contract. Fearing that Parker might do the unthinkable. According to Barry, this is an attempt to get their belts back raising concerns on whether all of AJ’s contracts have come with a rematch clause.
The Road to Undisputed, as the match has been labelled. Will no doubt be one of the huge boxing events in the recent past? With only a two-year age difference between the players. The stakes are high, and this will be a defining moment for both camps and a determiner of the next phase in their boxing career.