Zhilei Zhang Doesn’t Mince His Words: “Of Course I Will Target Joe Joyce’s Eye”

By James Slater - 09/15/2023 - Comments

Chinese giant Zhilei “Big Bang” Zhang has arrived in London, UK for his return fight with Joe Joyce, set for September 23. As fans know, the towering southpaw busted Joyce up back in April, “The Juggernaut” suffering a badly swollen shut right eye that forced the ending of the fight.

Zhang shocked plenty of us with his dominant stoppage win, and Joyce, who activated the rematch clause he was armed with, knows his very career will be on the line in the rematch.

And Zhang, who is not messing around, says he will be “targeting Joyce’s eye, no question about it,” in the return. Some people do wonder if Joyce’s eye has 100 percent healed, or if it ever will fully heal, so bad was the damage (although Joyce says it was just tissue that was damaged, no bones or retinal issues thankfully).

But if Zhang is able to smash his powerful right jab into Joyce’s head again and again as he did in the first fight, will Joe’s face hold up? Will Joyce be able to move his damn head in the fight this time around? Joyce did look like a fighter who had never been in there with a southpaw before, his performance in April really quite poor. Zhang doesn’t believe Joyce will have made the necessary improvements needed to beat him and get revenge.

And when asked if it’s “an eye for an eye, and is the plan to take out his eye again?” Zhang said, “of course.”

“Of course. Everybody saw the eye swelling up. So, I’m aiming for the eye, there’s no question about it,” Zhang said via Frank Warren’s Queensbury Promotion’s video. “I’m going for the eye for sure. I have no idea what Joyce is going to bring to the table, but whatever he brings that’s new, I’ve seen it (in training camp). I have to expect a tougher challenge, so here I am. I’m waiting to see that happen (Joyce knocking me out, as Joe has predicted this time). I’ll wait for it.”

It’s a fascinating rematch, as the first fight was intriguing, even if most people felt Joyce would win. Who wins this time? Will Joyce’s badly swollen eye be a factor once again? Will we see an outright KO this time, and if so, which man will be scoring it? Zhang means business as we should expect, while Joyce has it all to do this time round.