Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker Sparring Reviled
Anthony Joshua & Joseph Parker sparring reviled, ahead of the mouthwatering unification title fight in under a month.
French Olympic 2016 super heavyweight gold medalist Tony Yoka is Joseph Parker’s sparring partner, while American Marlo Moore will help Antony Joshua prepare for their unification clash slated for March 31, at Cardiff’s Principality Stadium.
Yoka and Moore train under coach Virgil Hunter at his California gym. Yoka confirmed the news to Sky Sports saying that he will be doing two or three weeks in Las Vegas with Parker to “ prepare him for his fight against Joshua.” In the meantime, Moore moves to Sheffield where Antony Joshua is sharpening his knuckles for the unification conflict.
Standing at 6’7, Yoka, 25, is an inch taller than Joshua and is arguably more flexible in the ring than the more muscled 28-year-old. Since turning professional in 2017, Yoka has recorded a 3-0, 2-KO victory. Among his notable wins was his fight against Briton Joe Joyce in which he conquered 2-1.The young prospect weighs 105kgs and has an 80” (208cm) reach.
Marlo Moore engaged Oswaldo Ortega in his first and only fight since turning professional in November 2017 and delivered a knock out on the 3rd round. The American failed to secure a place in the Rio 2016 which placed Yoka on the world boxing catalogue.
Tyson Fury, the former world heavyweight titleholder had expressed interest in sparring for Parker although the offer was rejected.Parker said in an interview that he didn’t see Fury as the “right person to spar because he moves around” too much and “he is a lot taller and doesn’t absorb a lot of punches.”
Sparring is an essential element in the preparation of a boxing bout and for general training purposes. The work of the sparring partner, unlike the pad, is to try and bring out the best of the athlete’s skills to the test.
He will be blocking your attacks, hitting back, evading among other things that a pad cannot do. A boxer’s sparring partner, therefore, plays a crucial role in helping them develop defence, attack as well as confidence.
The Joshua and Parker fight is no doubt one of the giant showdowns to watch this year. Tickets to the 80 000 capacity Principality Stadium are reportedly sold out.
The match contract highlights a rematch clause if Parker wins, but fans will be keenly watching to see whether AJ triumphs and moves to pick his next challenger, probably Deontay Wilder.
Either way, whoever wins the match will most likely be facing Wilder, although camp AJ has been reluctant to engage in fruitful negotiations. Nonetheless, promoter Eddie Hearn termed a fight between AJ and Wilder as “inevitable” now that Wilder has successfully retained his WBC belt.
From a certain perspective, placing Moore and Yoka on different sides of this season’s WBSS biggest clash gives them an opportunity to build up a rivalry between them as they prepare for world-class bouts in the future. They are both promising pugilists and the opportunity to work closely with seasoned players gives them a chance to take some notes.