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Zhilei Zhang vs Joseph Parker Preview & Picks – Zhang To Knock Out Parker

leigh-copson
19 Feb 2024
leigh-copson
Leigh Copson 19 Feb 2024
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  • Zhilei Zhang vs Joseph Parker picks for Friday, March 8
  • Heavyweight fight is taking place in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
  • Preview, predictions, stats & form
Zhilei Zhang (Getty Images)
    Zhilei Zhang vs Joseph Parker Preview & Picks
  • Zhilei Zhang vs Joseph Parker Preview & Picks
  • Zhilei Zhang Form
  • Joseph Parker Form

Zhilei Zhang vs Joseph Parker Preview & Picks

Zhilei Zhang is backed to retain the interim WBO title by knockout.

A change in trainer has reignited Joseph Parker’s career, but Zhang’s size and power is likely to be too much.

  • Zhilei Zhang has won 26 of his 28 professional fights
  • 14 of Zhilei Zhang’s last 15 fights have ended via knockout
  • Joseph Parker has been knocked out in his career

Zhilei Zhang Form

Zhilei Zhang is the interim WBO heavyweight champion with a professional record of 28-1-1 (21 KOs).

Zhang won his first 22 fights after turning professional in August 2014, with his streak finally ending in February 2021 when he went to a majority draw with Jerry Forrest.

He immediately rebounded from that setback with a couple of quickfire knockout victories.

The 40-year-old Chinese fighter took out Craig Lewis in the second round, and then needed only 111 seconds to take out Scott Alexander.

Zhang failed to make it three-in-a-row though, suffering a controversial unanimous decision defeat to Filip Hrgovic.

However, he bounced back quickly from his first career defeat, claiming the interim WBO heavyweight title in the process.

Zhang knocked out Joe Joyce in the sixth round to win the vacant belt in April 2023, and five months later he proved it was no fluke by knocking out the British fighter in the third round.

Joseph Parker Form

Joseph Parker is a former WBO world heavyweight champion with a professional record of 34-3 (23 KOs).

Parker became a world champion for the first time in December 2016 when he beat Andy Ruiz Jr by majority decision to claim the WBO belt.

He then made successful defences against Razvan Cojanu and Hughie Fury, beating both men on points, and that earned him a unification clash with Anthony Joshua in March 2018.

The 32-year-old New Zealander came up short, suffering the first defeat of his career, and he then lost on points to another British heavyweight, Dillian Whyte, later that year.

Parker finally got back to winning was before the end of the year, sparking a six-fight win streak that included a couple of decision wins over Derek Chisora.

His reward was a fight with Joe Joyce for the vacant interim WBO belt, but his attempts to secure another world title shot ended in failure as he was knocked out in the 11th round.

He has rebuilt his career since then though, winning each of his last four fights to get back in contention.

One of those wins was arguably the best of his career so far – a unanimous decision victory over Deontay Wilder last December.

Verdict

Joseph Parker looked great against Deontay Wilder, but the ‘Bronze Bomber’ was a shadow of his former self.

Unlike Wilder, Zhilei Zhang is not going to be gun-shy in this one, and we expect him to hurt and finish Parker during the contest.

Best Bet1: Zhang by KO/TKO Method Of Victory @-111.11 at Stake.us - 4 Units
Best Bet2: Zhang in Rounds 7-12 Round Group Betting @200.00 at Stake.us - 2 Units
Zhang by KO/TKO
Method Of Victory
@-111.11 - 4 Units
25 SC no deposit & 250,000 GC
Use promo code NEWBONUS

Sign up with the code NEWBONUS and when you verify your account get 25 Stake Cash for free PLUS 250,000 Gold Coins! No deposit required. 21+ only. T&Cs apply. Excludes NY,NV,ID, KY,WA, MI.

Bet at Stake.us
Zhang in Rounds 7-12
Round Group Betting
@200.00 - 2 Units
25 SC no deposit & 250,000 GC
Use promo code NEWBONUS

Sign up with the code NEWBONUS and when you verify your account get 25 Stake Cash for free PLUS 250,000 Gold Coins! No deposit required. 21+ only. T&Cs apply. Excludes NY,NV,ID, KY,WA, MI.

Bet at Stake.us