Joseph Parker says Joe Joyce has shown he has doubts over his ability to beat him after calling for a rematch clause ahead of their heavyweight clash in Manchester next month.
It was confirmed on Wednesday that the pair’s fight on September 24 will be for the WBO ‘interim’ heavyweight belt, the eventual holder of which would be in position to face the winner of Tyson Fury and Oleksandr Usyk should they meet for the undisputed championship.
“I know deep down I back myself 100 per cent to beat anyone,” Parker, told @idboxingnews. “I want to beat Joyce first, twice, I have to beat him in September, have a rematch and beat him again then I’m free to fight anybody.
“He’s not even champion so he shouldn’t have a rematch clause, but it’s one of those things where they weren’t going to make the fight happen unless it was in place.
“I don’t need a rematch clause, for the Joshua fight I didn’t need a rematch clause because I backed myself and I back myself now. I think it shows a little weakness.
“Because the first time we negotiated with them they didn’t care about a rematch clause. I didn’t look the best in the first Chisora fight, then after the second one they wanted a rematch clause, it shows weakness and shows there are little doubts that they think they might lose.”
Parker believes Joyce represents “the most difficult fight” currently available to him amid his effort to become a two-time world champion after signing with Boxxer.
The 30-year-old last fought in December 2021 when he beat Derek Chisora for the second time in a row to improve his record to 30-2, the only blemishes of his career coming in unanimous decision defeats to Dillian Whyte and Anthony Joshua in 2018.
“Joyce is one of those fighters people don’t want to fight, he’s been avoided because he’s very dangerous,” added Parker.
“We could see what he’s done with his opponents, he chases them down, big engine, pressure, pressure, pressure, throws a lot of punches.
“A lot of people don’t like to deal with that, but I do, I love a challenge.”
Joyce, unbeaten at 14-0 (13 KOs), meanwhile enters on the back of a fourth-round TKO win over Christian Hammer in what proved the latest insight into the Olympian’s granite chin.
“The knockout would be great, but just going in there, executing the plan and owning him and winning in good fashion,” said Parker.
“There’s no point winning boring fights, get in there and get amongst it, mix it up. There’s a way of fighting this guy and I think Andy Lee has got the perfect plan.”