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Day of Reckoning Saudi Arabia review: Parker stuns Wilder to ruin Joshua's plans

Anthony Joshua secured his third win of 2023 with an eye-catching display over Otto Wallin, but his plans to face Deontay Wilder are in tatters after the American was outclassed by Joseph Parker in Saudi Arabia.

The "Day of Reckoning" card was the boxing show of the year, with some of the world's best heading to Riyadh, and organisers put on an incredible show in what hopefully is the start of a big few months for the sport.

While the likes of Daniel Dubois and Parker got their careers firmly back on track, Wilder looked a shadow of his former self to potentially ruin promoters' plans for 2024.

Joshua rediscovers his confidence

Former two-time heavyweight world champion Joshua was back in action for the first time since switching to trainer Ben Davison.

Since his first career defeat to Andy Ruiz in 2019, Joshua has switched trainers in an attempt to find answers to his weaknesses, but the decision to team up with Davison could be his shrewdest move for many years.

Joshua has had five trainers in two years, but there will be no plans to leave his new camp after a sharp and dominant display.

The 34-year-old boxed superbly at range, chipping away at Wallin and causing damage as the fight progressed.

Joshua hurt the Swede on several occasions, busted his nose and nearly stopped him before Wallin's corner decided he had taken enough punishment after five one-sided rounds.

Wallin had given Tyson Fury plenty of problems during their fight in 2019, but Joshua suffered no such issues, and he could now take on Croatian Filip Hrgovic at the start of 2024 for another shot at a world title.

Wilder wastes golden opportunity

Joshua's plans to fight former WBC champion Wilder are all but over after the American lost on points to Parker.

Parker, a former world champion himself, produced a career-best performance to stun his powerful rival, who was unable to land a meaningful punch in the contest.

The New Zealander boxed beautifully to keep the fight at range, but he was more than happy to trade when the opportunity presented itself, and he secured a unanimous decision victory, taking it 118-111, 118-110 and 120-108 on the judges' cards.

Wilder spent the first six rounds on the back foot and struggled to impose himself, and by the time he realised he was losing the fight, he could not pin Parker down.

The 38-year-old looked below par in his first fight of the year, and he had only boxed for one round since losing to Tyson Fury in October 2021.

Parker, under the stewardship of trainer Andy Lee, put himself back in the world title picture with the victory, while Wilder vowed to return and learn his lessons after another defeat.

Dubois digs deep against Miller

British heavyweight Daniel Dubois got his career back on track with a stunning late stoppage victory over Jarrell Miller in Riyadh.

The 26-year-old was back in action for the first time since August when Oleksandr Usyk stopped him, and critics had questioned whether he had the heart and desire to compete at the highest level.

Dubois, who had been stopped twice before he faced Miller, answered those questions and then some, as he had to trade with the American who weighed 100lbs more than him.

Miller caught Dubois on several occasions as he continued to plod forward, but the Brit showed plenty of heart to fire back.

Both men were fatigued in the final stages, and even though Miller was goading his rival, it looked like he would see the final bell. Dubois did not fall for the kidology, though, and he unleashed a 10th-round assault before the referee jumped in with 10 seconds remaining of the final round.

Dubois' win puts him back in the frame for a potential world title fight, and like Parker, he gave himself the opportunity to demand a big-money contest in 2024.

Earlier on the undercard, WBA light-heavyweight champion Dmitry Bivol cruised to a points victory as he beat Brit Lyndon Arthur with ease.

The champion won 120-107 on all three cards, and he will now look to take on the winner of Artur Beterbiev v Callum Smith, which takes place in January.

Beterbiev is 5/19 to win, while Smith is considered a 27/10 outsider.

Cruiserweight Ring Magazine champion Jai Opetaia was also victorious, as he flattened Ellis Zorri with a one-punch knockout in round one.

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