Joseph Parker recovered from an early knockdown after Derek Chisora landed an overhand right punch flush seven seconds into their 12-round heavyweight clash in Manchester.
The fight was a close and rugged affair for the majority of the fight. Chisora was the superior boxer early on, as he had Parker on the ropes and kept the pressure on. Chisora made great inroads by working the body of the former WBO Champion. Chisora’s game plan coming into the fight was no different to his other fights, as he came forward throwing big, looping hooks to head and body, but it was effective. Parker struggled to keep him off and backed up against the ropes.
Things changed at the midway point, and Parker took charge, as the massive output from Chisora saw him get worn out. Chisora struggled to get close as his cardio was gone, and this benefitted Parker.
There was a better fifth round by Parker, who mostly kept Chisora at arm’s length and landed clean with a heavy right hook. The sixth and seventh rounds went to Parker too, as Chisora started to slow and found himself in the way of the New Zealander’s shots.
In the eighth round, Parker stood and traded with Chisora and was driving him back at the final bell. That is the round that changed things for Chisora as he clearly began gasping for air in his corner, while Parker still looked fresh. As he slowed, Chisora looked a step slower, which led to him taking shots as he tried to crowd in close, his game plan was not effective going forward without his cardio.
In the eleventh, Chisora ducked into a Parker uppercut and backed away for the first time in the fight. The Zimbabwean-born fighter clearly exhausted, he did manage to raise a final effort in the last round, landing two big overhand rights in the opening seconds. Parker fired back, though, knocking Chisora back into the ropes with two left hooks and then landed a heavy right.
The fight was as I had predicted here, https://sportshype.online/2021/04/28/derek-chisora-faces-joseph-parker-this-weekend/, to be a war and it was that.
Howard Foster gave Chisora the victory by 115-113, but the other two judges sided with Parker, Grzegorz Molenda going 116-111 and Andrew Bell going 115-113.
This was a controversial decision as many in the arena and those watching around the world felt Chisora had done enough to secure the win.
Dillan Whyte was not mincing his words on Twitter
Chisora’s thoughts on the fight:
“I’m beyond getting upset now,” he said. “It’s difficult because I train hard, I fight, I put the pressure on, I bring everything and this is the treatment I get from boxing.”
“My last fight was the same thing again, this fight was the same thing again. I think they don’t like me. I can’t get upset because it is just horrible.
“If Joseph wants to give me a rematch, I’ll take the rematch – easy. I won the fight. Even his coach, Andy Lee, said I won the fight. I will not let them slow me down, we will go again. They want to see me retire but I will not retire yet.”
Parker’s thoughts on the fight:
“It was a tough fight, I got caught right at the beginning, I just had to dig deep and stay focussed,” Parker said. “Derek is a very tough opponent, he came forward and put pressure on me from the beginning, threw big bombs, and landed – a lot.
“The boxing skills from the middle rounds towards the end [made the difference] but it was a very close fight. I thought it could go either way.
“He brought the smoke. If you want to feel it, jump in the ring with him.”
Despite Chisora’s massive dissatisfaction with the judges’ call he was upbeat about his chances for a rematch and hoped they could have that fight booked on the Fury v Joshua card.