Joseph Parker and Andy Ruiz Jr to fight for vacant WBO heavyweight title in New Zealand

08/11/2016 12:37

Unbeaten heavyweights Joseph Parker (21-0, 18 KOs) and Andy Ruiz Jr (29-0, 19 KOs) will fight for the vacant WBO title on December 10 at the Vector Arena in Parker’s native New Zealand.

Parker, who is the WBO's number-one ranked heavyweight, has already fought four times this year, including outpointing Carlos Takam and knockout wins over Solomon Haumono and Alexander Dimitrenko. And he will have home advantage when he fights for the WBO belt, which was vacated by Tyson Fury, against the 27-year-old Mexican, in the first ever heavyweight title clash to take place in New Zealand.

The 24-year-old Parker was also the number one contender for IBF champion Anthony Joshua (17-0, 17 KOs), who defends his title against Eric Molina (25-3, 19 KOs), also on December 10.

Ruiz is dangerous and tough but he has never fought top level opposition.

There has never been a world heavyweight champion from Mexico or New Zealand, so whoever wins will make history.

The WBO has ordered the winner of Parker-Ruiz to make the first title defence against David Haye (28-2, 26 KOs).