In the ongoing goose chase to find fights to fill the massive title void by Tyson Fury’s personal situation, one organization will soon have a new heavyweight champion.
The WBO ordered Joseph Parker and Andy Ruiz to fight for it’s vacant world title on December 10 in Auckland, New Zealand.
This fight had been a possibility for some time now and both sides have been in talks to fight against one another, possibly in New Zealand. Both fighters are ranked in the top 3 of the WBO’s rankings in the heavyweight division with Parker being ranked No. 1 and Ruiz is ranked No. 3. Wladimir Klitschko is ranked No. 2, but he is in talks with IBF champion Anthony Joshua over a possible fight with the vacant WBA title on the line as well as Joshua’s IBF title.
Top Rank CEO Bob Arum said that the two sides had agreed to the fight earlier in the week and that the remaining issue was whether or not the WBO would sanction this fight for a world title. The organization did give the fight it’s blessing for it to be a world title fight in its annual convention in San Juan, Puerto Rico.
“We have worked a deal out with Parker’s people and Andy signed the contract earlier this week, but it was all subject to the sanction,” Arum said. “We got the sanction and it’s a done deal. I met with Dean on Monday. He was in California before he went on to the Puerto Rico for the convention. My (matchmakers) think Andy has a hell of a shot. The kid is pumped because apparently he’s sparred with Parker and more than held his own. I’ve seen some of Parker’s fights on YouTube clips. He’s a tremendous puncher but he doesn’t look to me to be particularly fast and Andy is a very fast heavyweight.”
Both fighters are undefeated in their professional careers. The fight will be televised in the U.S. on the Spanish-language network UniMas on a tape delay.