Hughie Fury vs Joseph Parker WBO heavyweight title fight to be refereed by Marcus McDonnell
Last Updated: 19/09/17 5:28pm
Marcus McDonnell has replaced Terry O'Connor as referee for Saturday's WBO heavyweight title showdown between Hughie Fury and Joseph Parker in Manchester.
McDonnell, a veteran of 814 fights, had previously been listed as a judge for the bout but will now be the main official with British compatriot O'Connor taking his place as a judge alongside two Americans.
New Zealander Parker's promoter David Higgins had refused to take his seat at the top table at a heated Monday's news conference, walking directly to Fury's father and trainer Peter to complain about O'Connor's appointment.
The British Boxing Board of Control's general secretary Robert Smith told Higgins on Tuesday that he would reconsider O'Connor's appointment if he received "valid reasons" from Parker's camp.
"We've been asked to consider changing the official," Smith told Sky Sports. "But I need to speak to Mr Higgins before I confirm anything or change anything."
Peter Fury said: "We've written to the (British) Boxing Board of Control, and they're looking to oblige and change things around. We've requested it as well. That's all we can do."
Higgins, boss of Duco Events and Parker's promoter, later confirmed the refereeing switch in a statement.
"The British Boxing Board of Control has offered a compromise which we shall accept and I think regardless, the officials are going to be under a lot of scrutiny anyway because of all the fuss," he said.
"The eyes of the world are going to be on these officials and I'm sure they're going to want to be seen to be doing a good job, I think it would be very risky for any official to not be fair."
Champion Parker added: "He [Higgins] definitely proved a point and everyone heard it so now I think everyone is aware."
Hughie Fury said: "I don't get involved in the politics. I leave that to my team. I concentrate on the boxing. Everything's gone so well. I'm super confident."
Watch Luke Campbell challenge for Jorge Linares' world title on Sunday morning at 2am, live on Sky Sports Main Event & Action.