By Richard Damerell
Last Updated: 07/06/18 11:41am
Dillian Whyte told Joseph Parker to leave his “running shoes at home” as the heavyweight duo shared the stage at their first press conference.
The Brixton man’s next opponent was announced as Parker at The O2 on July 28, live on Sky Sports Box Office, and he was quick to give his opinion on the New Zealander’s defeat to Anthony Joshua in March.
Parker’s reign as WBO champion was ended by a points loss in his unification clash with Joshua, while Whyte was stopped in a brutal battle with AJ, and ‘The Body Snatcher’ urged the Kiwi to stand and trade with him.
I just hope that he leaves his running shoes at home on July 28 and comes to fight.
“I’m here to fight and I want to fight, and I want to give the fans nights to remember,” said Whyte. “This is one of them.
“This is a great fight. Joseph Parker will be hungry, will be motivated, and I just hope that he leaves his running shoes at home on July 28 and comes to fight.”
But Whyte did give Parker credit for swiftly agreeing to the fight after being frustrated in his past attempts to land a big-name bout.
“Yeah massive respect to him,” said Whyte. “He put up a decent performance last time. He had his moments in the fight with Joshua.
“He could have come back with a couple of easy fights and eke his way back in, but he came back in, wants a big challenge, and he’s stepping in with me.
“But I believe it’s a big mistake, him doing that. I’m sure he believes different, I’m sure they have seen something in me that they think they can beat.
“Like I always say, everyone always thinks they can do this and do that, and when they get in there, they realise this dude is way better than what we think he is.”
Parker was eager to take another major fight in Britain after his unbeaten record was ended by Joshua in Cardiff.
“It’s great to be back in the UK and I seem to spend more time here than at home,” said Parker.
A lot of fighters avoid each other, but credit to Dillian and myself for putting our hands up to fight each other.
“The last time I was here, it was a great experience fighting in Cardiff in front of all those people and all those in the build-up and even though I didn’t get the result I wanted, I feel like it’s a great time to be back.
“A lot of fighters avoid each other, but credit to Dillian and myself for putting our hands up to fight each other.
“We are both young, hungry and want to win.
“It’s a great reason to come back. We felt really welcomed by the support and I just want to fight anyone and everyone.”