Joseph Parker blasts out Dimitrenko
Heavyweight Joseph Parker made quick work of Alexander Dimitrenko, knocking out the Russia-born fighter in the third round at the Vodafone Events Centre in Manukau City, New Zealand on Saturday night.
Dimitrenko entered the fight against Parker having won six fights in a row, although all of those successes came against subpar opposition. He also had a height and reach advantage over Parker but the New Zealand native displayed his pedigree from the opening bell, utilizing his speed to beat his opponent to the punch.
Almost midway through the opening round, a right hand stunned Dimitrenko and moments later, a barrage of punches dropped him to the canvas.
The visitor recovered but while he did find some success by working the jab, Parker dropped him twice more in the second with right hands to the head.
The fight came to a bizarre and abrupt end midway through the third round. As both grappled on the inside, a right to the body dropped Dimitrenko to one knee. Parker followed up and landed another right hand to the body, causing Dimitrenko to collapse to the canvas in distress.
Whether Dimitrenko was really in pain or attempting to sell a foul remains a mystery. As the Russian veteran lay on the canvas, complaining of being in pain, referee Marlon Wright completed the 10-count at 1:38 of the round.
Parker (21-0, 18 KOs) retains a regional title belt, while Dimitrenko falls to 38-3 (24 KOs).
The 24-year-old Parker, who resides in nearby Auckland but trains in Las Vegas, is the mandatory challenger for the WBA and IBF world title belts. A bout against IBF titleholder Anthony Joshua is enticing, but word is Parker could face Andy Ruiz Jr. next for the WBO title.
That could occur if the sanctioning body strips their belt-holder Tyson Fury, who tested positive for cocaine use last week.
Heavyweight Izuagbe Ugonoh (17-0, 14 KOs) dropped Gregory Tony (21-7, 16 KOs) three times in route to a second round knockout win.
Francisco A. Salazar has written for RingTV since October of 2013 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (Calif.) Star newspaper, Boxingscene.com, and Knockout Nation. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter @FSalazarBoxing
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