Parker wins WBO Heavyweight title
December 10, 2016 4:15 pm
Kiwi Joseph Parker proved as good as his word as he became the first New Zealand-born heavyweight world boxing champion.
An impressive Parker battled hard over the back end of the fight to beat Mexico’s Andy Ruiz in Auckland last night to win the vacant WBO belt by majority point’s decision.
The judges scored the 12-round bout 114-114, 115-113, 115-113 – a reflection of how close it was.
The 24-year-old believed he was in the best shape of his career and promised to use his increased weight and size alongside his noted jab and hand speed to torment Ruiz.
He did that – just – and so fulfilled his childhood dream and his late grandfather’s prophecy, to win a world title.
Parker’s quest now will be to go on and unify the top of the sport’s glamour division.
The WBO belt represents the first rung on a ladder of four to the ultimate glory as the undisputed champion.