Joseph Parker’s next opponent Alexander Dimitrenko will have a nine-centimetre height advantage, and an 18 centimetre reach advantage when they step into the ring in Auckland on October 1st.
After days of speculation, Duco Events has today confirmed Parker will face the highly fancied Ukrainian, with an impressive 38-2 record, with 24 of those wins coming by way of knockout.
The 12-round bout will take place at the Vodafone Events Centre in Manukau, the same venue where Parker beat Carlos Takam to secure the IBF number one mandatory position in May.
Dimitrenko is a former European Heavyweight Champion and is bigger in size than current IBF World Champion Anthony Joshua.
The Ukrainian is on a six-fight winning streak and, by taking on this challenge, Parker risks his guaranteed world title shot in 67 days time.
“Dimitrenko is a guy who former World Champion, Shannon Briggs went out of his way to avoid earlier this year because of the risk,” said Duco Events promoter, Dean Lonergan.
“Even casual boxing fans know that all Eastern Europeans in the heavyweight division know how to fight”.
Dimitrenko’s career has closely mirrored that of fellow Ukrainians, Vitali and Wladimir Klitschko.
The 33-year-old has spent most of his career fighting out of Germany and has also trained with the late Fritz Sdunek, who turned both Klitschkos into World Champions.
At 6’7” or 2.01m, he is as big as Vitali and, among his victories, is one against Ron Purrity, who knocked out Wladimir Klitschko in 1998.
It is more than four years ago since Dimitrenko’s last loss, which was an 11-round war against highly respected Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev, who is ranked two places higher than Parker on independent website, boxrec.com.
It is predicted this Dimitrenko bout will also go into late rounds, and Parker fans are advised to be quick if they want to secure seats to what will be another sellout event.
Just 700 General Admission tickets are available, and will be on sale, on a first come, first serve basis, at Ticket Direct from late August.