Reigning heavyweight champion Joseph Parker has opened up to WBN after taking criticism from Hughie Fury when the pair met media to talk about their September 23 fight recently.
Fury accused Parker of looking past him after the New Zealander’s representatives met with Matchroom boss Eddie Hearn to discuss possible match-ups in the future, potentially against Tony Bellew, Dillian Whyte and fellow title holder Anthony Joshua.
Since then, Fury has himself chatted with David Haye at Hayemaker Gym on staging a first defence of Parker’s belt (if he wins it) against the two-weight world title holder, something which hasn’t gone down too well with the WBO ruler.
“I think Hughie should focus on fighting me instead of associating or thinking about David Haye,” Parker exclusively told World Boxing News before clarifying that Fury’s anger towards him was misdirected at the press conference.
“I didn’t meet with Eddie, my promoter did. I’ve never met Eddie Hearn in my life and I’m only focusing on Hughie Fury,” he said.
The pair will trade blows at Manchester Arena following the collapse of an original contest on Parker’s home soil, which fell apart when Fury suffered an injury in the build-up.
Asked whether he thought mandatory challenger Fury had any intention of travelling to New Zealand to face him, Parker questioned the 22 year-old’s desire to push outside of his own comfort zone.
“He wants to fight me in Manchester because he thinks he’ll have an advantage being at home,” pointed out Parker. “He was obviously scared of the home advantage I have in New Zealand.
“I am not afraid at all about fighting in Manchester. I’ve fought overseas professionally four times and as an amateur I fought around the world for years.
“From South Africa to Azerbaijan and everywhere in between, I am well used to fighting overseas.
“I am well used to the crowd being against me and It makes no difference to me at all,” he added.
Phil Jay is Editor of World Boxing News. Follow on Twitter @PhilDJay