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28th Dec 2017

Anthony Joshua and Joseph Parker have *finally* agreed on their purse split

They've reached a compromise

Darragh Murphy

After a lengthy negotiating process, Anthony Joshua and Joseph Parker have come to an agreement on how to divvy up the purse for their unification bout.

The fight, which will be finalised in the coming weeks, is as good as a done deal now that the stumbling block of the purse split has been dealt with.

Parker’s camp initially demanded a minimum of 35 per cent of the purse but Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn responded to that request by saying: “It’s not a million miles away, but it’s not happening at 65-35.”

Well some wiggle room has seemingly been found since that statement as the head of Parker’s promotional company has revealed that a compromise was reached over Christmas.

“We’re really, really close,” Duco Events’ David Higgins told ESPN.

“This fight has never been closer. And we’re a lot closer to a deal now because we’ve had a major breakthrough, which is that the two camps have formally agreed on the split.

“The Joshua side made a small concession and the Parker side has made a small concession.”

Joshua is eager to pick up every available belt in his division in 2018 and Parker, who holds the WBO heavyweight title, is the first port of call before ‘AJ’ looks at a potential meeting with WBC champion Deontay Wilder.

The Parker fight will likely take place in late March, with both Germany and Spain discussed as potential locations to host the bout.

And while we don’t know the exact figures involved, it’s clear that both camps agreed to meet somewhere in the middle on the Kiwi’s split request.

“It’s between 30 and 35-ish per cent for the Parker side,” Higgins said.

“I’ll leave it at that for now, but it’s somewhere close to the middle of that. Maybe after Eddie and I talk about it, we will make the figure public.

“So my gut feeling is there will be a deal. We’re only haggling over officials. We’ll have to have a discussion with the British Boxing Board of Control. I’m also happy to have the sanctioning bodies nominate a pool of officials.

“But even with that, we’re very close to a deal. Eddie and I get on well.  I found him to be smart, and we have a banter and humor between us. He doesn’t have an ego problem. I like working with people like Eddie Hearn. Both sides have given concessions. We respect them.

“The goal is to get it done as soon as possible.”