23 Jun 2015

Parker's next opponent changed

11:03 am on 23 June 2015

The New Zealand heavyweight boxer Joseph Parker will meet Australian Bowie Tupou in his next bout in Invercargill in August.

Joseph Parker knocks out Irineu Beato Costa Junior in Hamilton

Joseph Parker knocks out Irineu Beato Costa Junior in Hamilton Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Parker was originally scheduled to face Kyotaro Fujimoto until the Japanese champion unexpectedly pulled out of the bout following Parker's second round knockout of German champion Yakup Saglam in Palmerston North earlier this month.

32-year-old Tupou has a record of 25 and 3.

Tupou will put his WBO African title on the line, while 23-year-old Parker will put up his WBO Oriental and WBA PABA Heavyweight titles.

Promoter Dean Lonergan says Parker has so much more to gain if he can beat Tupou anyway so Fujimoto running scared has turned out to be a blessing in disguise.

He says there's no doubt a convincing win over a guy ranked 13th in the WBO will fast track us towards our overall goal of being top five by the end of the year.

The August 1 bout is also a showdown of the boxing brains with Parker's world-renowned trainer Kevin Barry battling wits against International Boxing Hall of Famer, Jeff Fenech, who is in Tupou's corner.

Fenech, who has previously trained Mike Tyson, is also a three-time former world champion.

Barry says Jeff doesn't train mugs so they have to be wary.

32 year-old Tupou brings the experience of nine years professional ringcraft to Southland on August 1st.