Parker Survives Two Knockdowns To Beat Zhang Via A Majority Decision

March 9, 2024
1 month
Parker Survives Two Knockdowns To Beat Zhang Via A Majority Decision

Joseph Parker survived two knockdowns to beat Zhilei Zhang in a majority decision to win the WBO Heavyweight Interim Belt.

Both fighters came into the bout with plenty of confidence. Zhang had stopped Joe Joyce in consecutive fights to win the WBO Heavyweight Interim Belt, making him mandatory for the winner of Tyson Fury vs Oleksandr Usyk. Parker secured the best win of his career, outboxing Deontay Wilder to win a unanimous decision.

With very little to separate the boxers, fans were served up a treat. Zhang secured the upper hand first, landing his signature left hand on Parker’s nose, which hit the canvas. Parker got up and made it to the end of the round, but the Chinese was full of confidence. The over-confidence proved too much, as Parker fought back immediately.

Zhang vs Parker

The heavyweight connected with a huge right hand, followed by a left hook, but Zhang took the shots well. But that switched the momentum as Parker found his groove. Parker began to outbox Zhang in the middle rounds, forcing the Chinese’s corner to urge their fighter to press the action.

That had some success, as Zhang sent Parker to the floor in round eight with a straight left, which was followed by a left hook. But Parker recovered well, connecting with a right hand before the end of the round. Both men attempted to push home their advantage, but Parker finished stronger.

Zhang began to tire, and at 41, the pace of the fight caught up with the heavyweight. Parker had a strong 11th round, connecting with his jab and right hand. As Zhang’s work rate decreased, his corner wanted a knockout. That never came as Parker won on the scorecards: 113-113, 114-112 and 115-111

Reaction

“Thank you to my team, this is a great win. I feel like we’re on the up now. Zhang is a tough man, he knocked me down twice but I came back to the corner and Andy [Lee] told me to keep my composure and keep boxing and follow the plan. I’m really happy and I’m going to go home and celebrate,” Parker said

https://twitter.com/rugrat_dreday/status/1766252690609254828

Full Card

Anthony Joshua def. Francis Ngannou via a second-round knockout

Joseph Parker def. Zhilei Zhang (c) via a majority decision (113-113, 114-112, 115-111)

Rey Vargas (c) vs. Nick Ball ends in a split draw (114-112, 110-115, 113-113)

Israil Madrimov (c) def. Magomed Kubranov via z fifth-round TKO

Mark Chamberlain def. Gavin Gwynne via a fourth-round TKO

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