JULY 24 can’t come fast enough for ‘Juggernaut’ Joe Joyce, who wants to ‘run over’ Carlos Takam before taking the chance to ‘punch up’ Anthony Joshua for the WBO title.
Joyce made clear he’d fight any of the big names but did express a preference for fighting a former Team GB colleague and sparring partner – WBO, WBA and IBF Heavyweight Champion Anthony Joshua.
Speaking to Dev Sahni at the press conference, Joyce said: “We’ve had lots of good, competitive rounds in the ring. It’s a good fight, a 50-50 fight.”
Asked what attributes he thinks he’d bring to the bout that could see him better the 2012 Olympic Gold Medalist, Joe added: “My footwork, punch variety, punch durability. Also I’ve got punch power as well so I can trouble him.
“Credit to Joshua though, he’s a great fighter. He’s got a good defence, has high punch output and he puts them together well. He’s got good uppercuts. He’s a strong guy, so it’ll be a tough fight.”
Though, despite the respect he clearly has for AJ’s ability, he left no doubt about his prediction should the pair meet in a competitive setting: “I look forward to the opportunity to punch him up”, he joked.
Joe, a 2016 Olympic Silver medalist in his own right, has forged a path of destruction through the Heavyweight division and, at just 12-0, already has notable scalps on his record including Bermane Stiverne, Bryant Jennings and, most recently, Daniel Dubois.
Losing is not something Joyce understands in the professional game, with his most notable loss coming in the amateurs when, as consensus would tell you, he was robbed of a Gold medal in the Olympic final in Rio against Tony Yoka.
The judging at that tournament in 2016 is now under investigation, though Joe wouldn’t be drawn on the potential for him being retroactively awarded his Gold medal. He did however pour cold water on the suggestion he could rematch Yoka in the pro’s.
“He had his two-year ban” said Joe, “but he did look quite good in his last fight, he looked strong. I don’t think he’s quite earned his place to fight me yet.
“He needs a few more fights yet and hopefully by then I’ll be World Champion and maybe I’ll give him a defence.”
Talks of Joshua or Yoka are questions for the future and the Juggernaut’s immediate concern is a tricky scrap with Carlos Takam on July 24th.
“(Takam) is coming to throw a spanner in the works but I’m not going to let that happen. It’s going to be a tough fight but I think it’s something I can overcome. It’s exciting and this is why I’m in boxing.
“I’m going to deal with Takam and then go on to win a world title and become a World Champion. That’s what I’m aiming for.
“First I’ve got him in my way and I’m going to have to take care of business on July 24th.”