Joe Joyce has opened up on his upset loss to Zhilei Zhang last Saturday.
Joyce was a sizeable favorite as he was defending his WBO interim heavyweight title against Zhang. Many viewed it as a tuneup fight for Joyce to secure a fight with either Tyson Fury or Anthony Joshua next but that all came crashing down as Zhang won by sixth-round stoppage.
After the loss, Joyce took to Twitter to share that he is okay but is still confident he can beat Zhang in the rematch.
“Before you all write me off I’m OK just got a bruised eye. I think I’ll be OK, as fights go I’m in good health. Not a great performance however, but I’ll go back to the drawing board and have to improve,” Joyce told his followers on social media. “Zhang was the better fighter on the night, but I still think I can beat him, even though he’s a strong contender.”
Joe Joyce does have an immediate rematch clause but it’s uncertain if he will trigger it. Recently, Frank Warren – Joyce’s promoter – did an interview and said the rematch may not be next.
“Zhilei is under contract with Queensberry for the foreseeable future and he’s got a great group of people we work with for him. If Joe wants that rematch, it’s his right to invoke it, it’s not ours. Our relationship with Zhilei will continue if he doesn’t, he’s got that decision to make,” Warren said. “He can do it immediately. He could take a fight and we could look to revisit it later in the year. At the moment, we’ve got to see how bad that eye is. We are going to have to assess it, he’s going to have to look at the performance and what went wrong but that decision on the rematch is down to him.”
With the loss, Joyce fell to 15-1 and lost his WBO interim heavyweight title.
Do you think Joe Joyce would beat Zhilei Zhang in a rematch?