Joseph Parker Wins Majority Decision Over Zhilei Zhang – Boxing Results

By James Slater - 03/08/2024 - Comments

Joseph Parker is the new interim WBO heavyweight champ, this courtesy of his 12 round majority decision win over Zhilei Zhang. Parker, who survived two knockdowns but was so much the busier, harder working man in almost every other round, won via scores of 115-111, 114-112, with the third judge somehow having it even at 113-113.

Parker was the deserved winner, but the former WBO heavyweight champ said in victory how he and “Big Bang” are contacted to fight a second time. In truth, not too many people will want to see a part-two of what we witnessed today in Riyadh.

YouTube video

Southpaw Zhang, a massive 291 pounds, looked as though he was sleepwalking through the fight. Aside from in the third and eighth rounds, when he dropped Parker – the first time with a straight left to the head that may have broken Parker’s nose, the second knockdown coming from a chopping right hook to the top of the head – Zhang did almost nothing.

It was weird to see and Zhang’s performance was frustrating to watch. Parker, though, was very good, the younger, much faster man showing heart in coming back from the two knockdowns, with Parker also firing in some quality shots.

Parker has really had a great comeback since losing to Joe Joyce (who Zhang of course stopped twice) – with him now holding wins over two very dangerous bangers in Deontay Wilder and Zhang; both of whom Parker made look very ordinary.

Zhang was indeed very poor today, it must be said. Where was the urgency, from both the fighter and from the corner? Was Zhang afraid of getting gassed out? WAS Zhang gassed out?

Again, this is not a rematch we will look forward to. Still, much credit to worthy winner Parker. There are other big fights out there we fans would much prefer to see Parker get, however.

How much has Zhang got left at this stage of his career, and can he possibly change the result in a return meeting with Parker?