Derek Chisora will be out to hit every legal part of Joseph Parker’s body in their heavyweight showdown on Saturday night as the Briton’s trainer Buddy McGirt warned the New Zealander: “The only thing safe is your balls.”
The two fighters topping the bill at the Manchester Arena this weekend ate breakfast together on Thursday morning, leading to general bemusement from those watching on, with little sign of any animosity between the pair.
One element of intrigue is that they have recently switched cornerman, with Chisora turning to the renowned McGirt, who has trained many former world champions, while Parker is now under the tutelage of Tyson Fury’s coach Andy Lee.
McGirt, though, insists he has not attempted to overhaul the style of Chisora, a relentless come-forward fighter, and the American, a little good-humouredly, told Parker (28-2, 21KOs) to expect a busy night.
“We’re going to mug you, the only thing safe is your balls, we’re going for everything else,” McGirt said. “What we’ve got to do is get down and dirty, we’ve got to hit them on this thigh, his knees, his back, anywhere.
“We’ve got to drag it down like that, it’s no secret. People say ‘Buddy are you going to get Derek to stick and move?’, I say ‘what are you, crazy?’ He’s got to be Derek, he’s just got to smooth the rough edges.”
The prevailing notion since this fight was announced is that Parker will use his superior boxing skills to keep his opponent from getting into range but McGirt believes the former world champion has more strings to his bow.
“What I think they’ll try to do is box but they’re also going to try to fight us inside when they want to fight us inside, not when we want to,” McGirt added. “They want to dictate, they’re not going to try to box all night.
“I know a guy like Andy and how he thinks, sometimes you’ve got to try to beat a guy at his own game for a little while. We’re prepared for that.”
Lee referenced how Fury confounded expectations by stopping Deontay Wilder in the seventh round of their fight for the WBC heavyweight title last year when asked if Parker could look to trade blows with Chisora (32-10, 23KOs).
“We might surprise you,” the Irishman said. “We surprised everybody with Tyson Fury against Wilder, we just might do the same but you’ll just have to wait and see.
“I can only see the fight playing out one way: Derek coming forward and bringing war which he has done over numerous fights in recent years and I see Joseph boxing a smart fight. If Joseph can put into practice what we’ve been rehearsing in training, then I can see Joseph winning by late stoppage.
“We don’t want to leave anything to the judges, the only way to guarantee anything in this game is by getting a knockout. As much as they’re going for it, we’re going to be going for it as well.”