Boxing: Joseph Parker 'ready to beat up' Junior Fa in Kiwi megafight

Forget their amateur record - Joseph Parker insists the level of opponent he has fought separates him from fellow Kiwi boxer Junior Fa.

The two heavyweight boxing contenders are close to inking a deal that will see them fight for the fifth time - but the first time as professionals.

Parker and Fa split two wins apiece in amateur ranks, with both believing they won all four. But their professional careers have taken completely different routes, with Parker claiming a WBO world title while Fa's health issues stalled his progress.

Rising heavyweight contender Junior Fa
Rising heavyweight contender Junior Fa Photo credit: Photosport

The COVID-19 pandemic has pushed the two camps closer together in 2020, as both look to assert themselves as genuine top-five contenders.

With international fights near impossible in the current climate, a mega-fight between the two has never been closer and both camps confirm a December date is in the works.

Parker believes he has a distinct advantage over fellow top-10 ranked Fa, pointing to his own body of work over the past five years.

While Fa's best career win came last time out against former US Olympian Devin Vargas, Parker has shared the ring with Anthony Joshua, Dillian Whyte, Andy Ruiz Jnr and Carlos Takam.

"We fought four times in the amateurs and are 2-2, but things have changed a lot," Parker tells The AM Show. "The level of opposition I have fought is of a much higher calibre.

"Hopefully we can make a deal. I think it will happen - we have given them what they've asked for.

"If they don't want to sign, then we are prepared to walk away and fight someone else who is keen to fight - we are talking about a lot of money.

"I am ready to go. I have been training twice a day.

"I just want to get back in the ring and give someone a beating."

Negotiations between the two camps have progressed since New Zealand plunged into COVID-19 lockdown in March.

Fa's team haven't budged on their call for a minimum $500,000 payday, and Parker's manager David Higgins and promoter Eddie Hearn seem to have finally come close to meeting that demand.

But while the fight is an undoubted attraction to Kiwi fight fans, the boxing world won't be shaken up if Parker has his hand raised.

The 28-year-old has been criticised for taking three relatively soft fights since back-to-back losses against Joshua and Whyte in 2018.

Alexander Flores, Alex Leapai and Shawndell Winters were all dispatched with relative ease, but none provided the statement win needed to return to a heavyweight title.

"David [Higgins] has tried his best to get top opponents," Parker tells The AM Show. 

"People say the quality of my last two opponents has been poor, but we have been trying to fight top-10 guys since my loss to Dillian Whyte - who I have been trying to get a rematch with. 

"It is hard, because those top guys see me as high risk with low reward, so they would rather take fights that are low risk."

But should Parker get past Fa, as most pundits expect, a date with one of the division's heavy hitters could be next.

Parker has already campaigned for a fight with new interim WBC heavyweight champion Alexander Povetkin, who shocked many with his knockout win over Whyte on Sunday.

"I watched the fight - I gave Dillian a call straight after and he said he was OK. 

"He realises that, in heavyweight boxing, one punch can change everything and that's certainly what happened.

"I video-called Eddie [Hearn] after the fight and asked him to give me Povetkin - or even Whyte. He told me to smash Junior Fa first and then he would look at one of those two for me.

"I want to fight everyone in the top five, but I need to climb the ladder to get back to the top. I want to be champion of the world - a two-time world champion and a unified world champion.

"I've given myself five years and then I am out."

Parker can go a long way towards achieving his plan with a highlight-reel win over Fa in December.