It’s rare in lockdown that I wake up before 9am, but tomorrow morning I’ll find myself going against that for some rare heavyweight action down under. Joseph Parker and Junior Fa will put nation’s pride on the line as they cross swords in Auckland’s Spark Arena in front of 8,000 fans. The two heavyweights fought a total of four times in the amateurs, which left them at a stalemate of two wins apiece.
Former WBO World heavyweight champion Parker has racked up three consecutive knockout victories since back-to-back defeats in 2018. His last outing against Shawndell Winters proved most impressive as the Kiwi was able to show a more aggressive nature than previously. Winters gave way to the aggressive Parker in five rounds, a win which signalled a new and improved Parker.
For Fa, it’s been quite the opposite. Although the 6’5 figure may sound menacing, the Kiwi hasn’t looked anything of the sort. As an undefeated heavyweight, he doesn’t know how to lose, and his fight with Parker will certainly require him to dig deeper than he has throughout his entire pro career. Fa managed to drop Devin Vargas twice en route to a unanimous decision victory in his last fight, but the stoppage should’ve come at some point. It was uninspiring that Fa could be competitive against Parker based off of that performance.
Now we are just mere hours away from the two Kiwis colliding, it makes sense to back the favourite here. Fa’s team have tried to play the mind games, but Parker has shrugged them off well. The main deciding factor here is that Parker is still improving whereas Fa hasn’t shown any development recently. The hand speed of the former World champion against the stockier and much slower Fa will leave the fight in Parker’s favour. Expect the undefeated fighter to lose his 0 and take a bit of a beating, as Parker will force the action and eventually the stoppage in the mid to late rounds.