Parker-Ruiz Card and Venue Announced
Joseph Parker and Andy Ruiz will fight for the vacant WBO heavyweight title on Dec. 10, and now a venue has been selected for the bout. Parker and Ruiz will fight at the Vector Arena in Auckland, New Zealand.
The bout is scheduled for twelve rounds.
Parker’s promoter Dean Lonergan spoke to Fight Sports about the announcement, saying the fight gives Parker the opportunity to reach a wider audience.
"This is a crossover fight for Joe Parker," Lonergan said. "He’s massive in New Zealand and Samoa, he’s reasonably well known to the boxing fans in Australia and a lot of the boxing fans around the world. But this is going to give him an opportunity to broaden that reach and put himself on the world map."
Lonergan pointed to the current landscape of the heavyweight division, which has been opened up since Tyson Fury vacated his titles. He believes that Parker has a major role to play in the division’s title picture in the coming fights.
"This is a massive fight for Joseph to push his claim that he’s up there with the best in the world right now."
As for what is next for Parker, Lonergan reiterated the previously reported news that David Haye (28-2) is in line to face the winner of this December matchup. That fight would take place "about three to four months after this one" according to Lonergan. That fight will likely take place in England due to Haye’s massive fanbase there.
In addition to the WBO heavyweight title fight, the card will feature a welterweight bout between Jeff Horn (15-0-1) and Ali Funeka (39-5-3); a super-bantamweight bout between Isaac Dogboe (15-0) and Julian Aristule (32-6); and a cruiserweight fight between Parker’s brother John (1-0) and Ash McDonnel, who is making his debut.
Parker (21-0) and Ruiz (29-0) are fighting for the vacant WBO heavyweight belt that was vacated by former champion Tyson Fury last month.
The fight will be broadcasted by SKY TV New Zealand.