Dereck Chisora’s trainer Dave Coldwell expects his fighter and his opponent in Manchester on Saturday night Joseph Parker to both be better versions of the heavyweight contenders who met back in May.

Parker won a bruising encounter over 12 rounds but it was close, the New Zealander rising from a first round knockout to win a split decision. 

Parker is with trainer Andy Lee while Chisora has returned to former coach Coldwell, having previously not wanted to train away from his London home.

“The only reason why it didn’t [continue] was because he was training in London and I’ve got my stable of fighters and my family,” said the Rotherham-based trainer. “He offered to pay for all of my fighters to train down in London but it would mean unsettling them and I like to be home when the kids get home from school so I wouldn’t do it, so that was the only reason why we split.”

Coldwell has noted changes since the first time they worked together. Coldwell used to train former cruiserweight champion Tony Bellew, who is friends with Chisora.

Both are big personalities but Coldwell said he’s never had a problem with either.

“When you walk in my gym you either do it as I need it to be done because I explain to you why it needs to be done or you walk through the door and you go elsewhere,” he stated. “I don’t give a shit. They’re with me for a reason. They’re not local. They’re leaving their families, their cold comforts to come up to me for a reason. And I think when they see the results with their boxing you kind of buy into it more.”      

“Mentally he’s been much better this time round,” said Coldwell of Chisora. “The first time round we had a couple of good results. Obviously [Senad] Gashi came and ran and we didn’t know he was going to come out and box southpaw when he’d never boxed southpaw in his life, so that threw us a little bit, and then he [Dereck] was impressive against Szpilka and then it was David Price [w tko 4] and then two losses [Usyk and Parker]. But mentally he’s just far better. He’s come in to the gym earlier, watching the lads train before him and then staying behind and watching the sparring after him and he’s been fully-integrated into the gym. He’s in a much better place mentally.” 

Chisora came out bombing last time, as he always does, and while Coldwell was coy on the strategy for the Parker rematch it’s likely that the controversial heavyweight will come out swinging, as is his custom, setting the pace.

“Without saying what we’re doing the plan is to knock Parker out,” Coldwell explained. “If you look at the last fight, the performance he [Chisora] put up in the last one left it open to interpretation whether it was won or lost. As far as I’m concerned, he’s got a loss on his record and if he boxes like that, I believe this version of Parker beats him convincingly. He’s got to take away the mistakes he made in that fight, he’s got to be more efficient and better with his attack, so he’s got to capitalise when he gets Parker in those positions.”

That is in part because of Parker’s trainer Andy Lee, who will be opposite Coldwell on fight night in the other corner.

Coldwell knows Lee well. Dave used to work with trainer Adam Booth, who trained Lee to the WBO middleweight title. 

“He’s got a great boxing brain,” Coldwell said of his opposite number. “He’s been with two of the best coaches there’s ever been with Manny Steward and Adam Booth and sprinkle a bit of Andy’s own touch in there and you’ve got an amazing coach who’s no doubt going to go on to a lot of great things in the sport. I’m expecting a much better version of Parker, a better version technically so what I’m saying to Dereck is ‘Don’t expect the same punches to land as last time because this time they’ll be delivered with better technique, so there’ll be more power and snap and therefore more effect in the punches.’ Dereck’s got to be a lot better than he was last time out.” 

The announcement of Parker-Chisora II got a lukewarm reception in many quarters, but Dave is happy Chisora has a chance of revenge and he believes it will be a better fight this time. 

“What do people want?” the coach asked rhetorically. “Because obviously you’ve got your AJs and your Usyks, Dillian Whyte or whatever but outside that… The last fight was a decent fight, it’s just that it was behind closed doors so there was no atmosphere, so that makes it worse and it was give and take. There was a lot of output in the fight. This time I think both fighters will be better, much better and I think with the crowd as well… it will add percentages and when you’re talking about top level, you’re talking percentages so I think we’re in for a really good fight. The first fight, some people thought Derek won and some thought Parker won, so why not have a rematch?”