Joyce-Zhang is official for April 15

Heavyweight Joe Joyce (15-0, 14 KOs) will defend his WBO interim world title against 6’6 Zhilei Zhang (24-1-1, 19 KOs) at London’s Copper Box Arena on Saturday, April 15, live on BT Sport. It will be the first defense of the belt for the ‘Juggernaut’, who put himself first in line for a shot at the full WBO title with a KO victory over Joseph Parker in September of last year in Manchester.

Joe Joyce: “It is a great fight. He had a tough fight against Hrgovic but I thought he won the fight. Zhang is a big, strong southpaw who is massive, and he has been to the Olympics and all that. So, he has the experience and I think it will be a great fight. He bangs so I will have to watch out for it…it will be a good preparation for Usyk or Fury, plus I haven’t fought a southpaw since I won the Commonwealth title against Lenroy Thomas.”

Zhilei Zhang: “I am always up for the challenge and when the opportunity rings the bell. Joe Joyce and I share a lot in common – we both are Olympic silver medalists, both are big punchers, and are nearly the same size. This is going to be an explosive, epic and tremendous fight.

MSG Female World Title Twinbill Presser Pics
Eubank Jr expected to trigger rematch clause

Top Boxing News

We have a few rules to make our comment section more enjoyable for everyone.
1. Keep comments related to boxing.
2. Be respectful, polite and keep it clean.
3. Personal attacks will not be tolerated.
Offending posts will be removed.
Repeat offenders will be put on moderation.
  • Zhang Zhilei is a big strong hw but he is even slower then Joyce and certainly less powerfull. Joyce does not need to get a quick KO so he picks him apart. Probably depends how long Zhang’s corner want to keep the mismatch going.

    • Zhang’s social media team downvoting your comment, but yeah, you’re probably exactly right.

  • Hopefully this is gonna be a more entertaining fight than we think. Two guys who can punch slow and hard.

  • Not so fast for those who are picking Joyce, Zhang has one of the sneakiest lefts in the HW division and he hits pretty damn hard. Plus the fact that Joyce wont be hard to find in the ring. I know its an unpopular opinion but I am rolling with Zhang on this one.

    • With as easy as Joyce is to hit, he’s also demonstrated a granite chin thus far. If he stood up to Dubois’ best, I’m rolling with him to take Zhang’s – but we’ll see.

      • Zhang has a rocket for an arm, do you really think that Dubois or Parker hits harder than Zhang? I thought he almost had Hrgovic out of there in the 3rd or 4th rd before that bell saved him.

        • I think Dubois does. If Dubois hit Hrgovic with the shots that Zhang did, I think he stops him.

    • your right Jake Zhang is a threat to everyone in the division ,he was impressive against Hrgovic and he also has a granite chin ,Joe will have his hand full…and for the record he is way faster than Joyce.

  • Zhang fades badly in fights, Joyce keeps gaining steam and cannot be hurt by Zhang. Zhang retires on his stool after eight one-sided rounds with a face that looks frightening.

  • Joyce/Wilder or Joyce/Joshua would be a good test for him to see if he’s ready for Usyk and Fury, after he stops Zhang late. His ring name should be “Slow” Joe Joyce! He’s slow, but effective.

    • He appears slower than he is. His hands are not slow for a man that big. Ask everyone who has been knocked out.

  • Slow vs slower but I think it’ll be entertaining for a little while.. should be TKO 6-7 rounds for Joyce. Usyk and Fury’s names should not be brought up.. Usyk will batter him for 12 lopsided rounds. Fury will be like a cat playing with a ball of yarn until he’s ready to end it. How about he fights the winner between Wilder and Ruiz?

  • This will come down to a battle of the chins. I know Joyce has a chin, and we will find out more about Zhang’s chin (real soon).

  • I don’t see anything special about Joyce, at all. Never have. I can see him losing this

    • I think Joyce is tough as nails but I agree that he’s no lock to win this fight. Zhang consistently hurt Hrgovic and didn’t get hurt himself and the Croat was all the rage before that fight. I thought Zhang deserved the nod in that fight. It’s professional boxing, hurt is the name of the game.

  • Zhang’s conditioning is suspect. That’s the difference here. Joyce has the better engine.

  • Fury usyk joyce. 3 of the best heavyweights of all time along with rocky Marciano Lennox Lewis jack Dempsey gene tunney.

    • That’s the dumbest comment I have ever read .
      Why….. why are you the way you are ??

      • What is dumb is discounting somebody’s opinion without expressing your own thoughts in an eloquent manner. Read some books on manners. If it was dumb in your opinion provide evidence to the contrary. You can’t. All of your so called greats got routinely beaten down. Look at there records. Ali used to lay on the ropes and take shots. That’s dumb. He couldn’t take the shots. He didn’t have the stamina to last. That’s why he has so many losses on his record and was finished when he was only in his early thirties. Fury usyk and Joyce all have undefeated records and have faced quality opposition. These are the facts. Not some dreamland you live in.

    • What fighter from any Era could beat tyson fury usyk or joe joyce. Fury is the best boxer with the biggest heart. Usyk is a machine. Joe Joyce is like a mountain of granite that simply cannot be hurt. What fighters from any other Era could have a chance with these three. You think Ali could beat tyson fury usyk or joe joyce.You are delusional. Joe Joyce would walk ali down and knock his block off. Ali git his ass whooped 3 times by Ken Norton. Joe Joyce is far bigger and stronger than Norton. Usyk is much more clever and agile than Ali. Tyson fury would toy with Ali then ko him . Get a grip.

      • Man Fury might get in 2 rounds with the younger Foreman with the exception of Ali slick and Young slick but I still think he won that fight
        He would have no problem hitting Fury who has no where near the strength he doesn’t get up from those bombshells

  • Oh no, there’s going to be a very big bang when he hits the canvas. Easy win for the Juggernaut

  • However the fight goes, and I reckon round 9 referee stops the fight in Joyce’s favour, You have to admire Zhang’s balls! His last oppo and now Joyce, most of the ‘contenders’ would never have taken these fights, but here he is………

  • If Zhang can win a heavyweight championship it would be a huge boost to the decaying sport. The most populous nation on earth would become instant boxing fanatics!

  • >