After months of intense speculation, it’s now looking extremely likely that Anthony Joshua’s next fight will be against Joseph Parker.
Per BBC Sport, Joshua’s world heavyweight unification fight against the New Zealander is poised to be confirmed.
The fight is set to take place on March 31 at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff.
The report adds that Joshua - providing he defeats Parker, the WBO champion - then hopes to fight WBC holder Deontay Wilder later this year.
No boxer has held all four heavyweight belts simultaneously before.
However, the 28-year-old will need to produce a more polished performance than his previous outing if he’s to record the 21st victory of his career against Parker.
Joshua went into October’s fight against Carlos Takam as the overwhelming favourite but needed 10 gruelling rounds to finish off the Frenchman.
Joshua and Norton mock Parker's physique
Ahead of the Parker announcement, Joshua made an appearance on The Graham Norton Show - a popular BBC chat show, which also featured Hollywood superstar Tom Hanks on Friday night.
And there was one moment when Joshua - and Norton himself - mocked Parker over his physique.
“We’re looking to bring the other guy, Joseph Parker, a tidy champion - there he is there. He has one of the other belts,” Joshua said.
At this point we saw a photo of Parker holding up his belt.
Norton then interrupted and said: “Can I just say, that looks like it’s going to be quite an easy fight,” much to Joshua’s amusement - and the audience’s.
“He looks like the king of pies!” Norton continued.
“Is that his new nickname?” Joshua responded, laughing. “Pie - ‘The Pie’. But I can’t underestimate anyone.”
“He must be a world-class athlete,” Norton added, “but he doesn’t look like one, does he?”
Watch the clip here…
Parker responds to jibe with brilliant tweet
A few hours later and Parker, having been made aware of what Joshua and Norton had said, then posted a brilliant tweet.
The 26-year-old responded: “Trust me, I do love my pies 😋 #GraemeAve”
Well played, that man.
Boxing fans loved Parker’s self-deprecating response…
Bookies expect Joshua to beat Parker
The bookmakers currently have Joshua as 1/25 on to beat Parker this year.
You can currently get odds of 8/1, meanwhile, if you fancy Parker to spring a big surprise.
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