Champ admits sledge went ‘too far’
BOXING: Joseph Parker incredibly labelled Anthony Joshua "the steroid king" - before admitting he had gone "too far" with his recent comments.
The two boxers clash at the Principality Stadium in Cardiff in March 31 with the IBF, IBO, WBA and WBO heavyweight belts on the line and it's already getting personal.
Speaking on the Graham Norton show on Friday, Joshua called WBA champ Parker the "king of the pies" and then added that even though he "looks like a pie eater, he's probably packing a wallop as well".
"But I can't underestimate anyone. There's not one heavyweight who hasn't gone without getting dropped in their whole career," Joshua said.
"A lot of fighters have lost their titles through underestimating other athletes, even though he looks like the pie eater, he's probably packing a wallop as well."
Clearly the label didn't go down well with Parker, who launched an astonishing attack on IBF, IBO and WBA champ Joshua, insinuating he takes performance-enhancing drugs
Speaking on New Zealand radio station Radio Sport, Parker said: ''They call me the king of pies, but I call him the king of steroids. Who knows, if you are that big and that muscly, there's something wrong."
Parker went on to claim that he has been told that Joshua takes steroids adding that he "doesn't know if it's true or not".
"I have heard word, I have looked at him and I have seen. He has been very close with Klitschko, he has been a reigning champion for a long time. So I don't know it may be true maybe not," Parker said.
''I don't know how he will respond, he may be angry or upset at what we have been saying. It's part of the game. I am not accusing him of using steroids, but I am saying it is a possibility. There are a lot of ways you can dodge drug testing.
"A couple of months ago, I heard him say: 'Why should I be worried about this little kid from New Zealand?' Well, now he's about to find out and the world is about to find out whether AJ can really take a punch."
After being given some time to reflect on the explosive interview, Parker admitted he had gone "too far" with his claims.
Writing on Facebook, the Kiwi boxer said: "Bit too far with that one. Shouldn't have said it. Will fix that up at some stage."
SunSport contacted Joshua's promotions team, Matchroom, who said they will be making no comment on Parker's interview.
Joshua and Parker will meet for the first time in their fight build-up tomorrow at the first press conference then will go at it in the ring on March 31 in Cardiff.