Duco promoter David Higgins has revealed that a deal for Joseph Parker to face Bryant Jennings had never made it over the line.
Rumors began last week that Parker had signed on to battle the American former world title challenger in August, although Higgins stated nothing was ever set in stone.
Higgins outlined stories that Parker was to travel to the United States in his next fight were always premature.
“Boxing is the riskiest business in the world,” Higgins said. “A promoter’s job is to find the best opportunity for their boxer. That means keeping all options on the table.
“I make no apologies for making the best possible deal for Joseph Parker. The reality is no deal was ever going to happen without the Parkers being fully satisfied with what was on the table.
“This fight is a great opportunity for Joseph and for Dillian. It’s a fight the world wants to see.
“Yes, we were negotiating with Jennings but we were also negotiating with other parties.
"In the end, Eddie Hearn and I managed to make a deal that has lead to what will be one of the most compelling heavyweight fights of the year.
“It’s a real credit to Eddie Hearn and Dillian that we’ve been able to make this fight happen. They’ve been confident and decisive from the outset – and that was a huge factor in getting us to where we are today," he added.
The pair square off at London's O2 Arean on Sky Sports Box Office this July in what's being billed by both sides as a potential eliminator to challenge Anthony Joshua.
Both men have tried and failed against Joshua in the past, leaving questions being asked as to how either deserve another chance without winning an official number one contender bout with a recognised organisation.