Joe Joyce to fight Zhilei Zhang in April as Briton takes next step towards world title
Joe Joyce will take on Zhilei Zhang in London this April, as the Briton looks to move a step closer to a world title fight.
Joyce, 37, will put the WBO interim heavyweight title on the line at the Copper Box Arena on 15 April, as he looks to set up a shot at the official belt.
“The Juggernaut” last competed in September, stopping Joseph Parker in the 11th round in Manchester to claim the WBO interim title, while the official version of the strap is held by Oleksandr Usyk.
Usyk, who also possesses the WBA, IBF and IBO titles, is expected to face WBC champion Tyson Fury next to crown an undisputed heavyweight champion.
In the meantime, Joyce will look to stay unbeaten as he faces Zhang.
The Chinese fighter, 39, was undefeated until his most recent contest – a decision loss to Filip Hrgovic in a brutal bout last August, on the undercard of Usyk’s second straight win over Anthony Joshua. With that result, Usyk retained the unified titles that he took from Joshua 11 months prior.
Zhang enters the Copper Box Arena with a professional record of 24-1-1 (19 knockouts), while Olympic silver medalist Joyce is 15-0 (14 KOs).
Prior to his victory over Parker, Joyce stopped Daniel Dubois, Carlos Takam and Christian Hammer in successive outings.