April is set to be a big month for the big men, as Joe Joyce ring return is now confirmed.
‘The Juggernaut’ was last out in September of 2022 – his 14th knockout in an undefeated 15 fight career. The stoppage of Joseph Parker crowned Joyce the WBO Interim Champion, placing him in excellent standing for a shot at the title currently held by Oleksandr Usyk.
Unfortunately for the 37-year-old, the Ukrainian is set to face Tyson Fury in an undisputed fight, leaving any number one challengers like himself at the sidelines for the time being.
Not one to sit and gather ring rust, Joyce is fighting in the Spring. His promoter, Frank Warren, provided an update to IFL TV.
“Joe will fight on April the 15th at Copper Box. He’ll defend his title. You certainly will [know opponent this week] – as soon as we get the contract back, we’ll have a press conference and get it up and rolling.”
The London venue can accomodate up to 7,500 fans. It’s widely expected that the man in the other corner will be China’s Zhilei Zhang. In fact, it was even recently reported to be a done deal before Warren and Joyce’s management, SJAM, said otherwise.
‘Big Bang’ Zhang was dealt his first professional defeat in 25 fights last September, although many pundits and fans thought he deserved the win. The fight against Filip Hrgovic was awarded to the Croatian via unanimous decision.
With 19 knockouts to his name, the Chinese southpaw should provide yet another challenge for that granite chine of Joyce’s, and his own punch resistance will be put to the test against Joyce’s thudding, relentless blows.