After lengthy delays, Dereck "Del Boy" Chisora finally put pen to paper and signed to fight the former WBO heavyweight champion of the world Joseph Parker of New Zealand. They will fight on the undercard of the eagerly awaited Josh Taylor vs Regis Prograis WBSS super lightweight final at the O2 Arena in London on October 26th. The fight will be shown on DAZN in the USA and by Sky Sports in the UK.
Chisora must have thought that reaching a position from where he could challenge once more for a world heavyweight title was close to impossible after his knockout loss to Dillian Whyte in December 2018. Wins over Senad Gashi and Artur Szplika brought him back to fringe contender status but if he manages to beat Parker, he will be right back as a legitimate top 10 contender (Chisora is currently ranked #10 WBC contender).
Joseph Parker was in a similar position after losing a decision to Whyte in July 2018, of course, he wasn't knocked out and the fight was very close, but he still needed to rebuild and here he is after 2 comeback fights, looking to become one of the top heavyweight contenders again.
This is a fight that the fans have called for, one that promises twists and turns a fight that is hard to predict. Chisora is only ever in a dull fight when he believes is opponent doesn't provide a threat to him, with the New Zealander he knows he needs his best form, he needs to make a war of it.
Parker has made himself very popular in the UK, his unification fight with Anthony Joshua proved his status as a top heavyweight when he became the first man to hear the final bell against AJ. The Dillian Whyte fight turned believers into fans. Outgunned for long periods of the fight and the victim of a head butt that knocked him down, resulting in a count, Parker knew he had to stop the hard-hitting Brixton man in the championship rounds and came tantalisingly close to pulling it off when he floored Whyte in the 12th and final round, only for Dillian to find his feet and see the round out to the bell. Parker was full of praise for Whyte in the post-fight interview, no complaining or bad feeling, just gracious in defeat.
They say styles make fights and this one is no exception. Parker and his Wiley old trainer Kevin Barry must be pretty sure that they have the game plan to beat the 35-year-old Chisora. Most think the only way to beat the Finchley man is to box cleverly on the outside, but Dereck has seen them all try and fail. You have to be able to trade with him and hurt him to even slow down his constant pressure. If you cannot make him respect your power then he will drag you into a war.
What we have learnt about Parker is that he is capable of boxing at a high pace for 12 rounds, we saw that against Joshua at the Principality Stadium, Cardiff in March 2018. He has solid power that will command "Del Boy's" respect.
Chisora is an improved heavyweight these days. His link up with former unified cruiserweight and WBA heavyweight world champion David Haye has seen his come into his fights in tip-top condition, not something we had seen often before. This has made Chisora into a real threat for any heavyweight.
This one for me, sadly comes down to age and wear and tear, and Parker at 27-years-old is only just beginning to reach his prime, he has only been in 3-4 really testing fights whereas Chisora's whole career has been full of draining battles.
Prediction: Parker wins a close but decisive points win.