Video: Joseph Parker fight in serious danger of moving to US

Dean Lonergan and Joseph Parker (Photosport)
Dean Lonergan and Joseph Parker (Photosport)

The daily soap opera that is the heavyweight boxing scene has taken another twist with news Duco Events is struggling to get the financial backing it needs to host the impending WBO championship fight between Kiwi Joseph Parker and Mexican Andy Ruiz.

December 10 has been confirmed as the date the fight will take place in Auckland at either Eden Park, Mount Smart Stadium or Vector Arena, but reports this weekend have suggested that Duco require the event to be underwritten, and their current sponsorship deals don't cover the seven figure number they need.

However Parker's promoter, Dean Lonergan, disputes that they have asked for Government assistance and are in fact looking at other commercial opportunities.

"We are looking for commercial partners who want a return of their investment, and that's what we are offering to a number of other partners and companies that could potentially come on board," he said.

"We are trying to get together a very significant amount of sponsorship."

Lonergan has warned that time is running quickly and the fight may be moved to North America.

"Right now, 70-80 percent this fight is going to the United States but we are in the fight business and we will be fighting hard to keep it here," he said.

"We have probably between one and two weeks to get this done, so we have got our skates on and we are going to do the best we can to all the foundations in place to make this thing work."

The former Kiwi rugby league international is hopeful that raising the money to keep the fight at home will ensure Parker has any advantage he can take in order to win a world title.

"Our preference is to have it [the fight] here in New Zealand," Lonergan said.

"We want to give Joseph home advantage, we want to create history, but at the end of the day we have a fiscal responsibility to ourselves and the company to make sure it works financially and if doesn't, then Bob [Arum] is happy to fill in and take the fight."


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