Derek Chisora tonight returns to the ring as he finally takes on Joseph Parker in the heavyweight main event of a stacked Matchroom card in Manchester.
The two rivals were originally supposed to fight in London in October 2019, only for New Zealander Parker to withdraw three-and-a-half weeks out due to illness that it was believed came as the result of a spider bite suffered in Las Vegas.
Chisora walked out of an interview, saying there was an argument brewing over the walk orders and that he would not fight unless he walked second. Parker’s camp attempted to solve the issue with a coin flip, which Chisora refused initially.
The coin flip eventually took place and was won by Parker, leading Chisora to storm off. The Chisora team then began packing up the fighter’s belongings, again making it clear that the fight would not take place if their fighter was forced to walk to the ring second.
Chisora and Parker have exchanged plenty of barbs since then and will collide at long last at Manchester Arena, with Chisora, now 37, looking to bounce back from his points defeat by former undisputed cruiserweight world champion Oleksandr Usyk in October.
SATURDAY MAY 1
10.00am Weigh-in Recap, Behind The Scenes Day 4 (Matchroom Boxing YouTube): Watch exclusive behind the scenes footage from the official weigh-in.
1.00pm Before The Bell (Matchroom Boxing YouTube and Facebook): Presenters Chris Lloyd and Darren Barker are joined by special guests as build-up continues towards the opening bell.
5.00pm Live undercard (Sky Sports Facebook): The opening fight of the night is shown on the Sky Sports Facebook page.
6.00pm Live Fight Night (Sky Sports Box Office and DAZN): Watch all of the action live on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK and on DAZN in all markets excluding the UK, Ireland, China, New Zealand and Samoa.
The reading continues the narrative that Chisora’s manager David Haye has found the key to motivating the mercurial 37-year-old, which showed in his impressive outing en route to defeat to the Ukrainian late last year. The addition of new trainer Buddy McGirt is also likely to be playing a factor.
Meanwhile, Parker (28-2, 21 KOs) hit the scales at 241.2 lbs, a shade over two months removed from his Auckland victory over compatriot Junior Fa. Like Chisora, Parker has also brought in a new trainer for this fight, former middleweight world champion and member of Tyson Fury’s coaching staff, Andy Lee.
In the chief support, undisputed lightweight women’s champion Katie Taylor (17-0, 6 KOs) weighed 134.8 lbs for her 10th defense in the division as she prepares to get reacquainted with London 2012 Olympics opponent Natasha Jonas (9-1-1, 7 KOs), who came in just lighter at 134.7.