Leading heavyweight contender Joe Joyce feels WBA Super, WBO and IBF title holder Anthony Joshua faces a testing night in prospect against former undisputed cruiserweight king Oleksandr Usyk on September 25, but that the champion’s advantages in size and power will ultimately prevail.
In a frustrating year that has seen none of the heavyweight division’s four, major world titles defended, Joshua-Usyk has yet to be officially confirmed, but British, Commonwealth and European champion Joyce sees only one winner assuming the bout does take place, as expected.
“I think Usyk could be a tricky fight for Joshua, but he should knock him out sooner or later you would think,” said Putney’s Joyce (12-0, 11 KOs), the WBO No.2 contender. “It is heavyweight boxing, so you never know, but Usyk is no joke. He is an Olympic gold medallist, a very skilled southpaw, so he will probably pose Joshua problems with his good footwork and ringcraft. I do think Joshua will get to him, sooner or later.
“I will happily take on whoever wins, but I would love the opportunity to fight Joshua. I think he will want to fight [WBC champion Tyson] Fury so we will have to see what happens there, but I am on the WBO track and looking to be made mandatory.”
Joyce will seek to build on last November’s stirring victory over South London rival Daniel Dubois when he meets former world title challenger and Joshua foe Carlos Takam at the SSE Arena, Wembley, on July 24.
“I’ll be going for the knockout finish and that is what I am planning to do,” added Joyce. “[Takam] is a respected opponent who has been in with the best, like Joshua and also [Dereck] Chisora, who has been mentioned to fight me but I don’t think he wants it. It is going to be a great fight.”