The judges scored the fight 114-112, 115-110 and 115-111 to the New Zealander – but it did not look as close as that
Derek ‘War’ Chisora’s vow of silence in the build-up to this WBO InterContinental heavyweight title fight with Joseph Parker might have disappointed the hype-machine, but there can be no doubt the Londoner gave his all once the bell went.
Yes, Chisora lost on points, but his ability to stay in the fight showed exactly why the Finchley fighter has become a cult hero with the sport’s fanbase.
The judges scored the fight 114-112, 115-110 and 115-111. It did not look as close as that from where I was sitting, though, in spite of Chisora going above and beyond.
Dropped three times with right uppercuts by former world champion Parker, Chisora did, however, show a will and resilience beyond belief in another relentless battle between two determined fighters from the blue riband division.
Parker, heavier than in their first bout, began the contest far more aggressively, landing heavy punches and showing faster hand speed. Indeed, the ‘War’ was brought by Parker, who until Saturday night was a forgotten man in the heavyweight division.
Chisora was given a standing count by referee Howard Foster in the fourth round after a huge right uppercut and left-hook combination from Parker, but extraordinarily the Briton fought back ferociously in the final seconds of the stanza, bellowing to the crowd as he was ushered by the official back to his corner when the bell sounded.
The bad boy of British boxing turned cult hero was back to his best in the fifth, enjoying his best round of the fight and forcing Parker to go into the trenches with him.
Into the sixth stanza they went, the Londoner forcing Parker to fight toe to toe, bullying the younger man onto the ropes where they engaged like two huge men in a phone box, their blows bouncing off each other.
A huge uppercut from Parker in the seventh sank Chisora onto his haunches, and, after beating a count by Foster, the Briton walked back into the red corner to fight off the ropes, under another assault from his rival.
Back came Chisora, though, this time putting his foe under real pressure.
Hurt again by a right uppercut in the eighth and falling onto the ropes – counted again by Foster – Chisora positioned himself in his own corner as the bell saved him.
Chisora’s will was unbelievable but one wondered if his corner needed to protect him from himself. And yet, back he came, no surrender, even as Parker slowly dismantled him.