Hrgovic Accepts Parker’s Challenge for Joshua vs. Ngannou Undercard in March

By Will Arons - 01/10/2024 - Comments

Unbeaten Filip Hrgovic (17-0, 14 KOs) has accepted the challenge of former WBO heavyweight champion Joseph Parker (34-3, 23 KOs) to fight him on the Anthony Joshua vs. Francis Ngannou undercard on March 8th in Saudi Arabia.

If Hrgovic gets his wish and faces Parker on the card, he could be risking his IBF mandatory status to fight Joshua for the vacant title. There’s a lot of money Hrgovic could be risking against Parker if his IBF mandatory spot is transferable in this fight.

Hrgovic wants to get in on the action, fighting in what could be a well-paying co-feature slot against Parker, who is coming off a big win against Deontay Wilder on the ‘Day of Reckoning’ card last December.

Parker, 31, named Hrgovic and WBO interim heavyweight champion Zhilei Zhang as two fighters that he’s interested in facing on the Joshua-Ngannou card in Riyadh.

Obviously, Parker will go in the direction of whichever fight pays the best, and that would be determined by the Saudis. If Parker fights the way he did against former WBC heavyweight champion Wilder, Hrgovic could be in trouble. That version of Parker looked exceptional, fighting better than he’d ever had before, thanks in part to his trainer, Andy Lee.

Hrgovic Eager to Take On Parker’s Challenge

The 2016 Olympic bronze medalist was quick to accept Parker’s challenge, saying, “I’m very happy to hear that,” Hrgovic said via ESPN. “I’m ready; I accept your offer, Joe, let’s do it.”

Hrgovic has been knocking everybody out late, scoring fast KOs against largely overmatched opposition. Recently, he stopped Mark De Mori in the first round on December 23rd in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Last August, Hrgovic knocked out previously unbeaten Demsey McKean, and before that, he beat Zhilei Zhang. As you can see, Hrgovic has been doing quite well, and Parker would have been on his A-game for him to win this fight.