Juggernaut ready to steamroll Parker as he chases a world title shot
Joe Joyce has vowed to make Joseph Parker pay for making him wait so long for their heavyweight showdown.
The unbeaten Londoner, 36, will finally collide with former world champ Parker at the Manchester Arena on September 24.
And the stakes could not be higher with the winner set to become the WBO’s mandatory challenger for whoever emerges victorious from the rematch between Oleksandr Usyk and Anthony Joshua later this month.
Unbeaten Joyce, who won silver at the Rio Olympics in 2016, said: "This fight has been a long time in the making.
"Parker realised he had nowhere else to go and eventually had to take this fight.
"The winner goes on to fight for the world title. It’s going to be a cracking fight and you will see why he tried so hard to avoid me.
"This is definitely the biggest fight of my career. It will cement me as an elite-level fighter and brings me in line to face the winner of AJ-Usyk or maybe even Tyson Fury."
The proposed showdown was left in doubt earlier this year when Parker switched promoters.
And Frank Warren, who represents Joyce, was delighted to get a deal signed and sealed after months of negotiations.
He said: "This is a fantastic fight that really keeps the heavyweight ball rolling.
"It has proved to be a little while in the making but this is a match between two in-form and quality heavyweights fighting to be first in the queue for a world title shot.
"It is one the fans want to see, so I am delighted to be taking this blockbuster fight to Manchester, in the biggest indoor arena in the country, which we want to see packed to the rafters.
"This is the perfect test of big Joe’s world championship credentials and victory over Parker would propel him into the top echelons of the division and right in the mix with the likes of Fury and Usyk."
New Zealand native Parker, who has won 30 of his 32 pro fights, cannot wait to lock horns with Joyce.
He said: "The fans in Manchester will see the very best of me.
"I am working hard with my trainer Andy Lee, everything is going smoothly and I truly feel great.
"I have waited patiently to get this fight on. Let me tell you now, the Juggernaut’s journey ends right here. He has nowhere to run."
Usyk defends his WBO, IBF and WBA Super titles against Joshua on August 20 in Saudi Arabai.