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Parker on one-way path to title shot

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 1/10/2016 Angelo Risso

Promoters for Joseph Parker will look to fast-track a world title bout after the Kiwi boxer's crushing win over Alexander Dimitrenko.

Parker, 24, cruised past his Ukrainian foe with a third-round TKO in Manukau after landing a right body blow that left Dimitrenko writhing in pain.

The Auckland-born fighter collected the WBO Oriental heavyweight title as a result of the win and remains the mandatory challenger to IBF champion Anthony Joshua.

He will now continue on towards an IBF title bout in November or March against Joshua, or a WBO title fight in the summer.

Promoter Dean Lonergan said Parker put on a clinic in his win.

"That's given us the impetus to go forward and secure the world title fight as soon as we can," Lonergan said.

"That was, in my eyes, a total destruction."

Parker, who stands eight centimetres shorter than the 201cm Dimitrenko, went into the bout as heavy favourite with the bookies and did not disappoint.

Dimitrenko came out with venom in the second round, throwing punches wildly, before Parker knocked him down again with a right overhand, followed by body blows.

In the third round, Parker hit Dimitrenko with a right body blow that left the Ukrainian in agony and forced referee Marlon Wright to end the fight.

However, the decision to award Parker a TKO for the punch was controversial, given Dimitrenko was on one knee when struck.

Dimitrenko told reporters after the fight that he'd look to appeal the decision as he was not standing when hit.

But Parker's trainer Kevin Barry felt the fight was already won by that stage.

He rated Parker's performance an eight out of 10, praising his self-assurance under pressure.

"Let's remember, that was the third time we had him down," Barry said.

"It was Joseph's best performance for more than a year."

Parker, for his part, said the win over taller opposition would fill him with confidence for harder fights down the road.

His head and hand movements were spot-on, and he succeeded in stepping around Dimitrenko's 211cm reach.

He hoped he could fight for the WBO title in New Zealand in the near future, potentially against Mexican-American Andy Ruiz Jr.

"Tonight, I was starting to get my groove on and then I just put on a nice shot," Parker said.

"We're on our way to the top, fighting those other big guys."

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