Joyce’s left key as he captures biggest fight over domestic rival.
By John J. Raspanti
3-1 underdog Joe Joyce used his educated jab to shut Daniel Dubois left eye and win the showdown between the undefeated big heavyweights in round 10 at historic Church House in London, Eng.
The pre-fight talk was who could take it. They brought power into the ring.
Both would be tested.
In the opening stanza, the big heavyweights (6’6” and 6’5”) got right to it. Joyce, with a slight advantage in reach, jabbed and jabbed. A number of landed. Dubois fired his own jab, but Joyce,35, had the edge. Dubois,23, upped the ante in round two. A right connected to the chin of Joyce. A left hook also landed. Joyce kept pumping his left. Dubois worked over Joyce on the inside.
In round three, Joyce (12-0, 11 KOs) kept up the pressure. A couple of big shots landed. Joyce absorbed them. Joyce connected with lefts. Dubois (15-1, 14 KOs) lack of head movement was hurting hum. Dubois jabbed well and went to the body. Joyce fought back. Dubois fired his left consistently in round four. He was trying to set up his powerful right. An uppercut missed. Dubois ate more jabs. He dug to the belly. Joyce’s left was working overtime.
On his stool, Dubois face was swelling. His nose was bleeding. The fight was close. Dubois connected with two over hand rights in round five. The heavyweights traded punches. Royce, though quite slow of foot, is crafty. Dubois, not the fastest fighter either, clipped Joyce with a number of heavy shots.
Joyce, unmarked, tried to get off first in round six. Dubois kept pressing the action. Joyce landed a sneaky right. His jab was scoring points. Dubois clipped Joyce. His left eye was continued to swell. It would soon be shut. Joyce jabbed the eye.
The fight had turned into a war of attrition. Joyce, who said before the fight that Dubois would come to respect his elders, came forward in round seven. Dubois connected with a hard right. Joyce landed a good right to the body. His jab was consistent. Joyce moved slightly to his right. Dubois popped his left. Joyce fought back with his own right.
In round eight, Joyce looked to bounce back after taking some punishment in the previous heat. Dubois jabbed. His eye was almost shut. Joyce caught him some more. Dubois kept working as did Joyce. The fight was close – though this writer has Dubois with a slight edge. Both men traded blows in round nine. Joyce was scoring. His Olympic pedigree was showing. Dubois connected with a right, but Joyce won the round. Joyce looked stronger while Dubois appeared to be fading.
Seconds into round 10, a stinging jab seemed to blind Dubois. He took a knee and stayed there, listening to the referee’s count but seemingly waving the white flag.
Joyce had showed that he was the more resilient fighter. He wanted his respect, and earned it. Joyce now holds the EBU European heavyweight title, Commonwealth title and BBBofC British Heavyweight belt.