Boxing: Joseph Parker wants a shot at undisputed world title or Anthony Joshua rematch after latest win

Joesph Parker feels he deserves a shot at an undisputed boxing world title after his upset win over China's Zhilei Zhang in Saudi Arabia.   

The majority decision victory saw Parker crowned the WBO interim heavyweight champion over the weekend, but as he arrived back in New Zealand today the boxer didn't take long to make his intentions clear.   

"I want to fight for the championship of the world or unified championship of the world and we're very close to getting there," he told Newshub.   

"This fight will be ranked right up there because of the challenge and what was on the line, and now it's mandatory for the WBO world title, a chance to fight for the championship of the world.  

“I'm nearly there."  

Joseph Parker punches Zhilei Zhang during the WBO Interim World Heavyweight title.
Joseph Parker punches Zhilei Zhang during the WBO Interim World Heavyweight title. Photo credit: Getty Images

Although the Kiwi's new accolade would usually put him in the prime position for just that, it may not be that simple this time around. 

Parker signed a one-way rematch clause with Zhang before their bout, allowing the Chinese boxer the right to a rematch if he lost to the Kiwi.   

Although he accepts a Zhang rematch is very likely due to the clause, Parker insists that nothing is ever completely set in stone in the boxing world.   

"There is a rematch clause, but things do change in boxing," he said.  

"Just because of the whole landscape of the heavyweight division things can change all the time."   

If Parker is given a shot at the undisputed WBO world title, he'll have to wait to find out who his opponent in the ring will be.   

Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk are set to battle in May to crown the first undisputed heavyweight champion since 1999. The historic fight will see the WBC, WBA, WBO, and IBF titles all put in on the line.  

And even when a winner is crowned, Parker may have to wait even longer for his shot, with former World Champion Anthony Joshua likely next in line after his vicious round two knockout of former UFC star Francis Ngannou moments after Parker’s win.  

Another option is a rematch between Parker and Joshua, with the winner getting the right for the title shot. His manager David Higgins believes that is the most likely scenario.

"I wouldn't be surprised if parker ends up fighting Joshua some time in the next 12 months or so," he told Newshub.

If the stars do align for the Kiwi, there is a chance he will have to go head-to-head with his good friend and training partner Tyson Fury. 

The heavyweight pair have formed a bromance over the past few years, constantly training together while often spending Christmas and New Year with each other's families.  

Fury was also the person who suggested his cousin Andy Lee should train Parker. 

Despite their good friendship, Parker won't back down from fighting Fury if an undisputed world title is on the line.   

"I don't care who I fight," he said.   

"If it comes down to it and he [Fury] is holding all the belts and I want to be champion of the world or unified champ, or undisputed champion, he and I can go away and have a chat and we'll fight each other."  

Joseph Parker embraces Tyson Fury after being announced the WBO Interim World Champion.
Joseph Parker embraces Tyson Fury after being announced the WBO Interim World Champion. Photo credit: Getty Images

Parker is also confident Fury will do the same.  

"If it's going to help my family, he's already set up for life, but if it's going to help my family, he'll do it."  

But for now, the new interim champion has a few other priorities on his mind as he lets his win sink in. 

"[I'm] just gonna go home and spend time. I've been away for a while," he said. 

"I just want to hold my kids, hug them, kiss them, play on the trampoline, play on the playground.  

"Have something nice to eat, sushi, Bruce Lee sushi!" He laughed.