Joyce sets sights on Usyk after Dubois upset

By Sports Desk November 28, 2020

Joe Joyce made clear he wants to fight Oleksandr Usyk next after recording an upset victory over domestic rival Daniel Dubois in London. 

Joyce claimed the British, Commonwealth and European titles as he wore down Dubois in a long-awaited showdown between two undefeated heavyweights with big hopes of bursting onto the world scene. 

The pair were due to meet in April and then July, but both dates were postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic. October 24 was also lined up at one stage, only for a further delay to the contest.

However, the clash did not disappoint when the two finally went up against each other in Westminster on Saturday. 

Dubois – favourite following 15 straight wins since turning professional – lived up to his nickname of 'Dynamite' at times as he landed some heavy blows, including an overhand right in the second round that briefly threatened an early finish. 

Yet Joyce was able to come through the occasional onslaught and, crucially, poked and probed away with his metronomic jab, a basic but clever tactic that led to him doing damage to his opponent. 

A swollen left eye caused Dubois problems and, after being caught again by a jab, he dropped down to one knee during the 10th. While looking at his corner, the 23-year-old was counted out. 

Joyce was able to celebrate a 12th successive triumph since opting to move into the paid ranks following the 2016 Olympic Games, having returned home with a silver medal from the super-heavyweight competition in Rio de Janeiro.

Now 35 years of age, the fighter known as 'Juggernaut' is not willing to hang around for opportunities against some of the leading names in a packed division, including Usyk. 

"Usyk! Usyk! I'm ready for you, Usyk!" Joyce told BT Sport while putting on a deep voice, mimicking the Ukrainian, who had done the same during the build-up to his recent clash with Dereck Chisora. 

Dubois, meanwhile, insisted he will come back stronger from the first setback in his career, though faced criticism in the aftermath following the circumstances surrounding the finish.

"He caught me with a good jab. It just happened, man. I tried my best, but I couldn't see. I'm a tough guy. I'll come again for sure," Dubois said. 

Former heavyweight world champion David Haye questioned the decision to take a knee while working for BT Sport, while Carl Frampton said: "I think he quit there, I have to be brutally honest."

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