Parker Beats Chisora In Manchester War

Parker Beats Chisora In Manchester War

The first fight between Joseph Parker and Derek Chisora left many not wanting to see more of the same. For different reasons, the rematch did also.

It was savage, unrelenting and from ringside, I witnessed a desperate and incredibly brave fighter fighting beyond the point perhaps he should have been allowed to.

Chisora has vowed to fight on, and there will be willing punters and promoters lying in wait to see more of the same. But the heroic effort he gave us last night in Manchester would be the fitting finalie to call time on his long career, and a wise call at that.

This observer has seen many a fighter carry on for too long with dire consequences, and I worry the longer Chisora fights on, he will become another sad statistic.

At 37, and now suffering his third straight and twelfth career defeat, it is difficult to see where Chisora can go. He said he will be back, but should he be allowed to.

The old British warrior was knocked down three times on his way to losing by scores of 115-110, 115-111 and 114-112. The scorecards do not reflect the one-sided nature of the fight, or the fearful and worrying amount of punches Chisora took for the majority of a pulsating unforgiving fight. It was absorbing and unsettling in equal measure.

Parker also absorbed more than his fair share of punches, and even his victory may come at a price. It was the kind of fight where both fighters left a piece of themselves in the ring. Both will have aged considerably in fighting terms overnight. The fight will linger long for two fighters who gave everything and more to keep their fighting futures alive.

Chisora kept marching forward, desperately seeking to find something to salvage the fight and his relevance in the heavyweight division. And while it never quite looked a lost cause, there was a slender chance Parker would fatigue enough to crumble under the Chisora pressure. But the sensible thing would have been to pull him out long before the end. At times it was an uncomfortable watch. Save him for another day wasn’t accurate enough, save him for many a day more so.

When the chances of victory is remote at best, is that worth the heavy punches a fighter subsequently absorbs. Sometimes you have to think about the future and not the present.

Parker deserves and will need a long rest after such a hard torrid battle. Under the tutelage of Andy Lee, the former WBO champion has seemingly found something that was previously missing from his game. That little bit of spite and venom that is often the crucial difference. The right uppercut, the highly effective punch of choice for the evening, did much of the damage. Chisora had little answer to it all night long.

The heavyweight landscape should become a little clearer when Parker returns and he could be a fight or two away from another chance to reclaim a version of the world heavyweight title. It was a night he proved he still has a future on the world stage. The manner of the victory would have silenced many a doubter.

Sadly, because of a Prime Minister who puts his own popularity and his political survival before the public welfare, this might be the last of boxing as we know it for quite some time. A proposed two-week circuit break will now likely last a lot longer, and the crowds will likely disperse for an extended period because of the dithering and incompetence of a Government that is out of its depth to the cost of a nation.

The vocal Chisora faithful probably sensed it might be their last big night out for some considerable time, and some enjoyed themselves a little too much. The fights inside the ring left the usual suspects feeling the need to have a go themselves. Thankfully, they were in the minority. The majority came to party in the right manner.

The passionate pro Chisora crowd was some sight. Chisora never gave up on the fight, they never gave up on him, especially the guy seated right behind me who felt he needed to throw punches at an invisible target, one of which landed on the back of my head with a little more force than was advisable. Concussion to go with dehydration and an empty stomach, one day I’ll have a system to make the evening a little less uncomfortable. But at least I left the arena feeling I had played my part. 

It was a good night for Matchroom to sign out on their year of change. We saw a little bit of everything on a night that in truth promised little but delivered a show of unforgettable drama. Sometimes that’s how it works.

But the night belonged to two heavyweights who served up one of the most violent fights I have had the pleasure, if that really is the word, of seeing live. A fight that leaves you humbled and feeling privileged to have watched.

Photo Credit: Mark Robinson/Matchroom Boxing

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