David Higgins, the manager of heavyweight contender Joseph Parker, is hoping that his boxer overtakes the WBO’s number 2 ranking – which is currently held by Olympic silver medal winner Joe Joyce. (photo by Photopost)
The man sitting in the WBO’s top spot, is mandatory challenger Oleksandr Usyk.
Joyce grabbed the number two position after last month’s stoppage of undefeated Daniel Dubois.
Parker is scheduled to face undefeated contender Junior Fa, who is ranked at six by the WBO, in February.
Higgins believes a solid win over Fa, combined with Parker’s history as WBO world champion, would allow the New Zealand man to overtake Joyce as the number two contender.
“You have to look at the resumes of the two fighters [Parker and Joyce]. Joseph Parker is a former WBO world champion. He has got some wins on his resume, including Carlos Takam, Andy Ruiz and Alexander Dimitrenko,” Higgins told Sky Sports.
“He took Anthony Joshua the distance. If Joe beats Junior Fa – and remember Fa is the current WBO number six – so if Joe beats Fa, I think on balance of the evidence, he would have to go to number two. But obviously we would lobby the good people of the WBO and that would be at the discretion of their ratings committee. It’s an interesting question, but we would hope to go back to number two.”
Usyk is pressing to get his mandatory shot, against current champion Anthony Joshua.
Joshua could potentially vacate the WBO belt in order to move forward with a high stakes unification against WBC champion Tyson Fury.
If that happens, then Usyk would have to face the boxer in the number two position for the vacant world title – which explains the current importance in holding the number two position in the rankings.