Lupesoliai La’auliolemalietoa Joseph Parker says he will bounce back.
He made the promise moments after he lost his WBO title following a unanimous points decision in favour of Anthony Joshua in an intense fight at a sell-out Principality Stadium, Cardiff, Wales.
Parker proved a stern test for the undefeated Brit and remained well in the contest up until the latter rounds.
It was the first time Joshua has been 12 rounds and forced into relying on a points decision to go his way to take the win.
And Parker insists he will be back for another go when the opportunity arises.
“I was beaten by the better man tonight,” Parker said, speaking in the ring after the fight. “It was a great experience and I want to say thank you for the opportunity.
“I’ll take it on the chin and I’ll be back again. I’ll work harder next time and land more punches, I’ll be giving it another go, certainly.
“I could have worked the inside a bit more, but we’ll reflect and go again. Thanks to the Samoans and New Zealanders for being here tonight. Joshua is good, he was better on the day but I’ll be back.”
It was a cagey affair throughout with Joshua remaining marginally on top throughout each round. In the opener, Joshua came out on the front foot and established a minor cut to Parker’s left eye.
A decent combination from Parker on Joshua’s body in the second settled the nerves before Joshua took the third.
He edged the fourth as well, as Parker could only rely on body shots. He bounced back in the fifth with a front-footed charge and combination to Joshua’s head.
At the halfway mark, Parker came out firing with a couple of big swings with the referee swooping in to separate any afters.
An uppercut from Joshua after the referee broke the pair up displeased Parker’s coach Kevin Barry, which instigated Joshua’s final flurry as he remained in control in the latter stages.
Parker gave an excellent account of himself and was well in the contest throughout, but ultimately fell short to a unanimous points call.