Joe Joyce to fight Joseph Parker for the interim WBO heavyweight title

  • Tom Ward
Joe Joyce vs Joseph Parker

Joe Joyce will fight Joseph Parker for the interim WBO heavyweight title to determine the mandatory challenger to Oleksandr Usyk.

The Juggernaut will lock horns with his New Zealand rival at the AO Arena in Manchester on September 24.

Parker held the title for two years after beating Andy Ruiz Jr but was then beaten by Anthony Joshua in 2018.

The WBO title was then passed to Usyk when he beat Joshua in 2021.

ALL THE INFO: Joe Joyce vs Joseph Parker: Date and Everything We Know So Far

Both men know a defeat here will put them right at the back of the queue for a world title shot.

And according to BoxingScene.com, the WBO interim belt will also be up for grabs.

A statement released by the WBO reads: “The WBO Championship Committee grants sanction approval of the Interim Heavyweight Championship between Joe Joyce and Joseph Parker subject to the conditions stated herein.

Joe Joyce vs Joseph Parker
Joe Joyce will battle Joseph Parker for the WBO interim belt

“Joe Joyce and Joseph Parker understand, agree, and accept all the conditions stated herein and any other provisions hereinafter established by this Committee as a condition to granting sanction approval for the Interim Championship Contest.

“If Joe Joyce and/or Joseph Parker suffer(s) an injury that prevents his participation, is prevented to participate, impaired to participate, or unavailable to participate for whatever reasons in the Interim Championship bout, WBO Championship Committee shall proceed per WBO Regulations of World Championship Contests.

“In light of the foregoing circumstances and seeking to protect the rights, interests, and opportunities of the remaining contenders in the Heavyweight Division, we rule that an Interim Heavyweight Championship is justified.

“Even more so between the two highest-rated available contenders in the division the highly regarded undefeated Joe Joyce and the former WBO Heavyweight Champion Joseph Parker, respectively.

“By virtue of [Monday’s] ruling, we take affirmative action by assuring the fans that the fights that they clamour for and desire take place for the betterment of the sport of boxing without undermining the rights of the other contenders.” 

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Joyce, 35, has been the mandatory challenger since defeating Carlos Takam in a sixth-round stoppage in July 2021.

In July, Joyce stopped Christian Hammer of Germany in the fourth round to remain mandatory challenger and then called out Usyk, who was not present.

Parker, meanwhile, kept himself active during a busy 2021 in which the former world champion recorded wins over Derek Chisora and Junior Fa respectively.

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