Sci-tech

Joshua beats Parker, becomes 3-belt king

Joshua beats Parker, becomes 3-belt king

Asked about the referee's performance, Parker's trainer Kevin Barry said: "Obviously, when one guy (Parker) has got a 76-inch reach and the other guy has got 84 or 85 (Joshua), it's important when we do close the distance that we are able to work".

"I know the bookies say I might get a knockout but forget the hype, Parker was a world champion", Joshua said.

Both men are fiercely proud of their familial heritage as well as the countries of their birth: Joshua bears a tattoo of Africa on his right shoulder while Parker was led out by his two uncles in traditional Samoan dress.

"Joseph did get himself into a position at different times to take that fight but he was unable to pull the trigger", says Mike Angove.

It was his 21st straight career victory, although previously unbeaten Parker delivered a battling display without seriously troubling Joshua.

The lone belt missing from Joshua's resume is the WBC heavyweight world title, a strap which is now held by Deontay Wilder.

And he insisted he felt no disappointment in going 12 rounds.

"Parker said this will be a war".

Victory over Wilder in a fight mooted for London's Wembley Stadium in the northern summer would make Joshua the first undisputed world champion since Lennox Lewis in 2000.

Round four followed a similar pattern, then Joshua caught his opponent with a couple of powerful body shots in round five before Parker tried to raise the tempo, and it proved his best spell of a fascinating encounter.

Joshua looked typically confident and carried that energy into the ring, often keeping his opponent on the back foot with an accurate ramrod jab and the Kiwi was muscled to the ropes by a crunching combination in the third.

"We could have worked on the inside more, whatever happened, happened and we can't change it". However, one man who was not buying into any of that was Tony Bellew, who was on the Sky Sports Box Office panel in Cardiff.

The cut round Parker's left eye worsened and blood emerged from the wound in the tenth round.


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