Joseph Parker's Popularity Skyrockets And Tyson Fury Is Partly To Blame

The Kiwi heavyweight has become an incredibly popular figure in isolation
11:10, 08 Apr 2020

Few boxers have seen their stock rise so highly without having set in foot in the ring as former WBO heavyweight champion Joseph Parker has over the last few weeks.

The affable Kiwi has seen his popularity skyrocket as the world was brought to its knees by the spread of Covid-19 after, with the help of videographer Kerry Russell, filming an ever growing number of parody music videos that he’s been releasing across social media from the confines of his own lockdown, to help lift the spirits of fans around the world also stuck at home.

His latest video, which he posted on Tuesday, shows him and his partner, Laine Tavita, doing an incredible rendition of John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John’s fairground sing-song from Grease - much to the understandable dismay of their two daughters Elizabeth and Shiloh who are just trying to watch Shrek.

The Joseph Parker love affair all began with the 28-year-old’s own version of Hugh Grant’s dance scene from Love Actually. In the one-minute clip, the New Zealander hilariously replicates the fictional Prime Minister’s famous dance before telling his family he’s in ‘training’.

He followed that up with a lip-synced version of The Foundations' 'Build Me Up Buttercup', joined (virtually, of course) by friends and colleagues from their own isolation hell, including none other than Britain's own popular pugilist, Tyson Fury. 

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It’s all great fun and Parker has done a wonderful job at connecting the boxing community, drawing in well over a million views at the same time.

"Since we are all locked down, we wanted to come up with an idea to put a smile on people's faces or give them something to laugh about," Parker told the BBC Sportshour Podcast, after his 'Buttercup' performance. 

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"I do some great work with my videographer Kerry Russell, who is in my bubble. We come up with ideas and start filming.

"I reached out to lots of my friends and family, and those guys came back straight away. It was about having fun for us, but giving back to others.”

And who was the first celebrity to throw his hat into the ring to help out? The answer won’t surprise you...

"Tyson Fury was the first to get back to me."

Well, of course he was...