Back in April, Joe Joyce picked up his first professional defeat at the hands of hard-hitting Chinese heavyweight, Zhilei Zhang.
With the pair scheduled to rematch next month, the 37-year-old Brit knows one change that must be made if he is to successfully avenge his loss.
Zhang sprung the upset with a sixth-round technical knockout victory in Joyce’s backyard, closing the eye of the granite-chinned Olympic silver medallist so badly that the doctor intervened and called a stop to the bout.
Joyce weighed in at 256lbs for the bout, the lowest he had recorded since his fifth professional outing against Ivica Bacurin.
In an interview with Boxing Social via Free Bets, the Brit confirmed that he will be heavier this time around, believing he was too easy to push around in their original meeting.
“Yeah, definitely [coming in] heavier. I kind of always try and watch my weight, to try and keep myself a little bit lighter, but I didn’t expect to go that light [in my first fight with Zhang].
It was hard to keep the weight on. It was something in my diet that wasn’t agreeing with me, I’ll cut that out and the weight won’t be an issue.”
“I will be coming in heavier and harder.”
The move could prove to be a genius one or a costly one, with Joyce already unable to avoid Zhang’s power punches even when weighing 256lbs.
Coming in heavier, he may be harder to bully around the ring, but it is likely that he will also be sacrificing any speed of foot by piling on the pounds.