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Home » Exclusive: Wilder, Haye targets as Ruiz II is ruled out for Parker

Exclusive: Wilder, Haye targets as Ruiz II is ruled out for Parker

The big-hitting New Zealander claimed a portion of the heavyweight title by defeating Mexican-American Ruiz on home soil in Auckland and is now scouting an opponent for a first defence of the title.

Hughie Fury has been named as one of the main contenders to be in the opposite corner to Parker in a possible spring return before Higgins says the 24 year-old will look to travel abroad to further his horizons against fellow champions.

“I’m not sure we’d be in a hurry to rematch Andy Ruiz,” Higgins exclusively told World Boxing News.

“The main reason is because he’s not a star in the UK and he’s not really a star in the United States.

“For Joseph to increase his star power in the UK and the States, he has to knock out famous star name boxers.

“Beating a Wilder in America will do a lot more for Joe’s profile then a rematch with Ruiz, the same as beating David Haye in the UK. That makes Joe an instant household name in the UK.

“So the Ruiz rematch is not really a rational or logical choice at this stage unless Ruiz was able to make a comeback and work his way back to establish his own star power.”

Parker’s exploits have already brought interest from Stateside promotional power Top Rank as Higgins continues to seek out new ways of helping his fighter breakthrough to the mainstream on both sides of the Atlantic.

“We are not completely sure which route we will go down, whether it’s the United States or the UK, but it certainly helps to be able to call (Top Rank boss) Bob Arum a friend. We got on great and have big respect for what he’s achieved.

“He’s only a phone call away and we are certainly sounding him out about things, in particular when we are going to take on the American market. So, it’s a great deal for us and it’s a win-win situation to have Bob there when we need him.

“We also promote a welterweight in Jeff Horn, who I think is now the number one with the WBO and there is talk of him getting a very exciting shot at Manny Pacquiao in his next fight or two,” he added.