Joe Joyce has reflected on his loss to Zhilei Zhang earlier this year, and admits he was surprised by Zhang at the CopperBox Arena that night.
Zhang handed Joyce the first defeat of his professional career back in April, overturning wide betting odds when he forced referee Howard Foster to wave the fight off due to a gruesome eye injury he had inflicted upon ‘The Juggernaut’ through a series of punishing left hands.
In a recent interview with BT Sport, Joyce revealed he was taken aback by the speed of ‘Big Bang,’ but added he is confident of righting the wrongs second time around.
“I was quite surprised. He [Zhang] is very quick and accurate with his punches, he’s no mug. He’s a very good fighter, and he was so quick, and a very good southpaw.”
“He was just landing shots at will really. It was a tough fight, and I perhaps wasn’t prepared enough for him. I did my best, but I think I could do a lot better. I think, going back to the drawing board, there’s certain things I can do to improve and be more successful.”
“It wasn’t a great look for me, I didn’t perform well.”
Despite not appearing to be too keen on the idea in the immediate aftermath of their first meeting, Joyce has to decided to activate a contractual rematch clause and take a second crack at Zhang.
Promoter Frank Warren recently told TalkSPORT that they’re targetting the second half of September. Although he didn’t go into location details, it’s expected to land in the United Kingdom once more.