Joyce overcomes awkward foe

by Karl Graham

JOHN Joyce secured his third win as a professional boxer last weekend after making light work of Hungarian Imre Simon on the Celtic Clash 4 undercard at the National Stadium.
The Lucan welterweight, who at 30 years of age is a latecomer to the sport of professional boxing, was forced into a change of style early on but still had far too much for his opponent, and took victory after a second round stoppage.
“To be honest, he was awkward. Very awkward,” Joyce told the Dublin Gazette after the fight. “He changed to southpaw straight away so that kind of put me off a little bit. I had obviously game-planned for an orthodox fighter but, look, you have to be able to change when you are there. They are completely different styles so I literally had to change the way I fought.”
Simon seemed to spend more time on the canvas than on his feet with the official knockdown count standing at five but, unofficially, at eight or nine.
“I knew I had hurt him early because his legs were gone. He just wouldn’t go away though, which was the only thing,” said Joyce.
“He dropped a few times but I made hard work out of something that should have been easy to be honest with you. He was very awkward.”
It can often be the case that little is known about the fighters coming over from Eastern Europe and Joyce praised his trainer for preparing him correctly ahead of the fights.
“Tony Davitt teaches me well and has me well ready for them anyway. I would have gone another ten rounds there with the way he trains me.”
The veteran manager, trainer and promoter was also quick to praise his student.
“The lad has a good record so it was a bit of a step up for him That was only his third fight; two knockouts and a win on points,” said Davitt.
When asked what is next for the Irish Army colonel, Joyce explained he would be leaving it in the capable hands of his trainer.
“Another six-rounder. We’ll see what happens. It’s up to Tony who I fight next, he’s the boss.”
Davitt then confirmed that Joyce’s next fight would again be over six rounds.
“His next contest will be a six-rounder in the new year then we will go from there.”
“Hopefully a title maybe after that,” Joyce interjected.
However, Davitt was quick to keep his fighter’s feet on the ground.
“Maybe two more fights and then a title. We are not going to rush it or get over excited. That was a good win tonight so I’m happy and he’s happy.”

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