JOE JOYCE packed on almost two stone to be a career heaviest for his massive revenge mission against Zhilei Zhang on Saturday night.
The Putney Juggernaut, 38, lost around a stone before their April showdown that the 40-year-old Chinese southpaw won after battering the Brit’s right eye shut.
But the Wembley Arena re-run will be a colossal 40st affair as Joyce tipped the scales at a whopping 20st 1lb and Zhang also added pounds to hit 20st 7lb.
Fine art graduate Joyce was only 18st 4lb for the original clash and looked good at the weigh-in.
But he put in the worst performance of his career after a new supplement disagreed with his digestion, was peppered with every shot Zhang threw and had to be hauled out of the fight to save his vision.
An extra 25lb will not make him any quicker or more illusive but his shots should carry more sting as he aims to get his career back on track.
He said: “I knew the weight was a little bit light last time.
“This time I’ve corrected all the mistakes and been more conscious of what I’ve been eating and the way I’m training.
“I’m in a lot better a place, physically, mentally and also with my focus and drive to win this time.
“I believe I’ll get victory in this fight. I can stop him if I hit him with the right shots.”
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However, Joyce remains haunted by the drastic end to his 15-fight winning streak and knows Zhang will target his damaged right eye again tonight.
Joyce, who spent a night in hospital with a cracked cheekbone after the first bout, added: “It took me a couple of weeks to get over it.
“Every now and then I have thoughts about it. It’s a very different environment when you lose a fight, compared to when you win.
“It’s annoying, every once in a while you’re reminded that you lost a fight and I realise now how much I prefer the feeling of winning.
“I wasn’t massively hurt, I did my usual cool down and then started to feel all the bumps and bruises.
“But I wasn’t hurt apart from the eye swelling which went down in a week. I had a minor fracture but otherwise I was in good shape.
“I could have carried on but then it might have got stopped later, with more damage to the eye, so it’s better to regroup and go again.”
Source: The Sun
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