War of the worlds

By Seti Afoa ,

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Lupesoliai La'auli Joseph Parker

Lupesoliai La'auli Joseph Parker (Photo: Scottie T Photography)

It is clear, the Frenchman was the gatekeeper to Britain. And now Parker has sabotaged the Frenchman, next on the radar is a South Pacific Islands invasion of Britain.

The talk in the tunnel and post-fight analysis afterwards had a forward looking approach to it all. Parker had to win tonight (Saturday night) to get to the Brit for the War of the Worlds. 

First, the analysis of the French revolution of sorts was in minute details. Parker spoke first of Carlos Takam’s threat. “He landed shots in close, so when Kevin told me to stay back and use my reach and box from the outside, it was a better performance.”

“The focus had to be 100 per cent for this fight, at times it slipped. When I regrouped and heard Kevin shout “double-jab” it started looking better.” 

When asked about hitting Takam with power, “It felt like he had a very solid jaw. He has been in the ring with some big names and you can tell he was prepared for tonight. You can tell it was war.”

The eighth round, do or die, all or nothing round, and Takam would not be silent. “Well, he has heart and he was prepared. I felt I had him in the eighth round and I landed some good shots on the head, but I forgot about the body, should have gone to the body too then.”

“I was freely scoring on the head in the eighth and clearly forgot about the body.” 

When asked about being hit by Takam and how it felt, “It felt nice,” he said with a smirk. “He did tag me a couple of times.”

“The goal for this fight was to hit and not get hit, but this is a tough fight and at some stage I got hit.” 

Kevin Barry was happy with his charge’s work rate, “It was a great fight and a learning experience for Joe.”

“When you look at what we have been fighting the last three years, they have been little steps to this fight. Tonight, this was not a little step, this was a real guy.” 

“I have tried to prepare everybody that Joe will have to dig deeper than he has ever done before. Tonight, he dug deeper than he has ever dug before.” 

“He will learn more in this fight than his last 18 fights. I am very proud of him because he weathered some storms. He came back composed, and got behind his jab again. We started winning rounds again, and he could keep him on the outside.”

“It was very hard to watch, Joe is like my son and I was watching him go to war. I knew it was going to be like that, Carlos Takam wasn’t hype. He’s the bogeyman of the heavyweight division. We’ve got to go through him.” 

“The great thing for me was hearing all three judges went for Joe. So no controversy even the French judge gave the fight to Joe. We thought he was going to vote for Takam coming from France but he had Joe winning the fight by four points.” 

In the latter rounds Barry demanded more of his fighter, “Actually, what I said to Joe at the end of the ninth round was I said this is real heavyweight boxing. This is the big time stuff. I told him that he belongs here and I need these next three rounds. Let’s start by winning round 10.”

“He won round 10, then 11 and the 12th round was pretty close.” 

Barry was not confident of victory until Joe’s hand was lifted after the verdict was given. 

“I knew he won when his hand was lifted in victory.” 

The Parker management then issued a call to Anthony Joshua who is the holder of the I.B.F. heavyweight belt. 

Speaking for the team , promoter Dean Lonergan had this to say to Anthony Joshua, “The Joseph Parker freight train is coming and it’s going to run right over Anthony Joshua.”

Parker closed out the interview, “I’m looking forward to a great war.”

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