Parker vows to light up O2

Mickey Parker fights at the O2 on Saturday. Picture: Keith Woodland
Mickey Parker fights at the O2 on Saturday. Picture: Keith Woodland
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Lucas Ballingall, right, on his way to victory over Michael Dehamnia. Picture: Neil Marshall (1713340-659)

Portsmouth ace out to be a sharpshooter in 2018

Bare-knuckle boxer Mickey Parker. Picture: Keith Woodland (171415-0062)

Leigh Park man living his bare-knuckle dream

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Mickey Parker insists fight fans at the O2 will be getting plenty of bang for their buck when he returns to the ring on Saturday.

The Leigh Park man, 35, will take on Scott ‘Bam Bam’ Welton in his second bare-knuckle bout when he steps out at the top London venue.

Parker, who is a veteran of the white collar scene, claimed a debut triumph at Liverpool’s Echo Arena last year.

He admitted to The News last month he was living a dream as part of the Bare Knuckle Boxing (BKB) organisation masterminded by Joe Brown and Jim Freeman.

That dream will hit new heights on Saturday when he gets to showcase his skills in the event, which has attracted a huge crowd and is also available on pay-per-view via channelfight.com

Three world titles are up for grabs across 11 bouts and Parker is determined to prove his worth.

Mickey Parker, right, and his boxing trainer Billy Bessey. Picture: Keith Woodland

Mickey Parker, right, and his boxing trainer Billy Bessey. Picture: Keith Woodland

His rival, Welton, who has stepped in for the injured Tom Ward, has vast experience in the sport.

But Parker, who trains with former professional boxer and ABA champion Billy Bessey in Leigh Park, will not be overawed.

He said: ‘Scott is an experienced lad, who has been bare-knuckle boxing a lot longer than me but I’m confident.

‘I don’t class myself as qualified in the world of boxing to know all these guys and what they bring.

I’m aggressive. For a big fella, I am very, very fit and I don’t take a step back. Well, I haven’t yet!

Mickey Parker

‘I leave it down to Billy and he tells me what we need to work on. But we are going to go in there and give people what they want.

‘I’m a fighter, I like winning but I like entertaining more. I like giving value for money.

‘What I liked at the Echo, when I walked out afterwards to see the wife, was I had people shaking my hands saying it was great to watch.

‘That’s what I want. At the end of the day, whether it is boxing, BKB or MMA, it is about entertaining people and putting bums on seats. If you’re doing that, you must be doing something right.

‘I’m aggressive. For a big fella, I am very, very fit and I don’t take a step back. Well, I haven’t yet!

‘I have been in with some good company in the white-collar stuff and I haven’t taken a step back. I’ve lost but I haven’t taken a step back.’

While Parker is a relative latecomer to the sport, it is still early days in his career.

Brown and Freeman are recruiting new fighters all the time as popularity soars.

But Parker is ambitious and is not ruling out a title tilt one day.

He added: ‘I’m living a dream at the moment. But there are world titles on these shows and winning one of them would be my dream.

‘I’m too old to box. But doing this, if I could get anywhere near world title standard, that would be the aim.

‘There is a British title. It’s a lovely belt as well and I quite fancy that.

‘But this is growing all the time. We have lads from MMA getting involved now, so there are some very exciting fights out there.’