Parker, the mandatory challenger to heavyweight champion Joshua, is due to face Russian Dimitrenko on October 1 in Auckland but was recently named on the three-man shortlist for a UK fight in November by promoter Eddie Hearn.
Joshua’s next fight date was revealed as November 26 during BBC coverage of the Rio 2016 Olympic tournament earlier this month, leading to immediate speculation about who could possibly be in the opposite corner.
Hearn went public to rule out Joshua’s compatriot David Price and named Parker alongside Kubrat Pulev and Bermane Stiverne as the most likely to oppose the London 2012 gold medallist in the late autumn.
As Stiverne is currently negotiating with Alexander Povetkin for a shot at the interim WBC belt, Parker and Pulev were left as the frontrunners for Joshua’s first fight outside London in five fights.
Due to Parker already having a fight lined up, it was earlier assumed by WBN that Pulev had the upper hand, although Duco moved to point out that the unbeaten number one contender could still fight on both dates.
“First of all, the Dimitrenko fight will 100 percent take place on October 1st in Auckland,” Duco spokesperson Craig Stanaway exclusively told World Boxing News
“In regards to Joshua, we are having ongoing and constructive conversations with Eddie Hearn about November 26. One option offered to us is to fight on the Joshua undercard on that date.
“Joe has fought in Germany and twice in the States, but this would potentially be his first bout in the UK.
“One thing we know is Joseph Parker is at his best when he’s active, but every fight from here on in is a real risk because he has to win. Even if we can’t get a deal for Nov 26, Joe will fight again on or around that date.
“What is absolutely certain is that Joseph Parker will be the best prepared opponent that Anthony Joshua has ever faced by the time they do step into the ring and face each other for the world title as ordered.”
Parker’s trainer Kevin Barry added: “We have had an ongoing dialogue with Eddie Hearn for several weeks but nothing is confirmed right now and we are training and planning to fight Dimitrenko on October 1.”