Make or break for Parker-Fa

An all-Kiwi clash between former WBO heavyweight champion Joseph Parker and world-rated rival Junior Fa is at the make or break stage.

Parker’s manager and co-promoter David Higgins has made Fa a final offer in a last-ditch attempt to make the fight happen. 

“We’ve gone the extra mile and we’ve guaranteed Junior Fa and his side a minimum $500,000 and with a [pay-per-view] share on top,” Higgins told Newshub.

“It is the final offer. It’s over the odds. It’s probably 20 times Junior Fa’s biggest ever pay day. It’s an honour and a privilege for Junior to cash in on his career to date against Joseph Parker…. if a fear of losing isn’t at play he would take the money, win the fight, move on.

“There really is no excuse now other than to step up and bank the money. Who needs it more? Junior. Because he needs the money.” 

Fa (19-0, 10 KOs) had previously demanded half a million so that appears to meet his asking price. A deal looked to be edging closer in recent days with Dunedin’s Forsyth Barr Stadium, Queenstown Events Centre and venues in Auckland all under consideration to stage the biggest fight in New Zealand boxing history.

“This is up there because it’s got those magic ingredients. It’s got two stars. Junior Fa is now becoming a household name. Joseph Parker is a household name. You’ve got parochialism. A Kiwi of Tongan descent [Fa] versus a Kiwi of Samoan descent [Parker]. People will pick their sides,” Higgins previously told Stuff.

“It’s competitive. Some people think Junior Fa can beat Joseph, he is unbeaten. Then Joseph Parker obviously has his fans. Then you’ve got credibility in that they’re both ranked top 10 in the world. It would be a massive match-up, probably the biggest this country has seen because it’s unprecedented and never before have we had two heavyweights in their prime, both ranked in the top 10 in the world in the WBO.”

Parker (27-2, 21 KOs) and Fa fought four times in the amateurs, winning twice apiece.