Joe Joyce’s team have been challenged to start talks for a high stakes clash against Joseph Parker, with the winner staying on course for a world heavyweight title fight.
Joyce is next in line to challenge for the WBO belt after Anthony Joshua defends his world titles against Oleksandr Usyk at Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on September 25, live on Sky Sports Box Office.
But the British contender could firstly risk his status as WBO mandatory challenger against Parker, who is also ranked highly by the WBO.
Parker’s manager David Higgins told Sky Sports: “I think it’s a good time to be ranked No 3 with the WBO.
“The key is to keep busy and keep winning. After a relatively uncertain period in the division, if you’re up there, then the next year or two could be quite good.
“Places could shuffle around and a world title fight might come up for those that are there at the right time.”
Asked if Joyce could feature in Parker’s plans, Higgins told Sky Sports: “Yes, sure thing.
“They are welcome to contact me.
“Yes, we would fight Joe Joyce.”
Joyce, who will be ringside to watch Joshua vs Usyk, would relish a fight against Parker while he waits for a world title shot.
“Nobody will be excited to fight Joe but, unfortunately for them, he’s ranked at No 1 so somebody will have to fight him,” Joyce’s manager Sam Jones told Sky Sports.
“Joe will be ringside and is looking at them as his future opponents.
“Joe is going there to say: ‘Look, I’m No 1 in the WBO, let’s go!'”
🔥 JOSHUA vs USYK – September 25, live on Sky Sports Box Office 🔥
— Sky Sports Boxing (@SkySportsBoxing) August 27, 2021
“Joseph Parker is a great fight – if it presents itself, we’d take it in a heartbeat.
“Andy Ruiz Jr, Luis Ortiz. It’s a real possibility it could happen. Joe is game for either of those.
“We are looking forward to making big, big fights now for Joe. I’ve made it clear that we only want big fights and that’s what we’ll get.”
What’s happened to Parker vs Chisora rematch?
Parker is still awaiting an offer for a second fight against Derek Chisora, but Higgins has warned that time is running out for the rematch to be scheduled in the next few months.
The New Zealander defeated Chisora by split decision in May.
“It’s whoever makes sense [for Parker],” Higgins told Sky Sports.
“I think the Chisora fight was a close fight and they are both household names, so a rematch could make sense there. We’re just mindful of our time being run down.
“When we fought Dillian Whyte, it was seven odd weeks. Chisora’s team, when he was with David Haye, tried to give us only seven weeks, so we pulled the pin. Then the last fight was only about eight weeks.
“There’s talk of the end of the year, but we haven’t seen a contract yet. I don’t think we’ll take the fight unless we get a decent nine or 10 weeks to prepare.
“I think the latest date in the year is probably that early December window, and then it runs out of time, so talk is cheap, we need to see a contract.”