Ref Changes For Fury-Parker
David Higgins who promotes Joseph Parker, had been on a crusade for a neutral referee for Saturday’s world heavyweight title contest between Parker and Hughie Fury. So intent was Higgins, that he confronted Peter Fury, the father and trainer of Parker’s opponent at Monday’s press conference.
This attempt by Higgins seems to have worked as the originally scheduled official Terry O’Connor has been moved from in the ring as the official, to outside the ring as a judge in the heavyweight title bout.
It’s not all good news though, as another British official in Marcus McDonnell will now take over – which Higgins still sees as some sort of small victory.
“There has been a lot of drama about the officials for this fight and quietly behind the scenes we have been writing good letters to the organisations and we have been offered a compromise by the BBBoC which we will accept… Is that ideal? Maybe not but look, it’s good … at least the referee is not the same guy that did Hughie’s last two fights. I’m really happy and relieved that change has been made. I think it’s an OK outcome.”
O’Connor joins two American judges appointed for the WBO championship match-up, whilst Higgins would ideally like one of those US-based officials swapped for a New Zealander.
“If there is a Kiwi to offset the Brits, that would be fine,” said Higgins after writing to the WBO requesting the change.