Joe Joyce makes his return to the ring against heavyweight Christian Hammer as ‘Juggernaut’ looks to push towards a clash against the Oleksandr Usyk vs Anthony Joshua winner: Everything to know ahead of the fight
- Joe Joyce returns to the ring as he takes on Christian Hammer next weekend
- The Juggernaut had been set to fight Joseph Parker before a deal fell through
- Joyce hasn’t fought since his impressive KO win over Carlos Takam last July
- He has recovered from a wrist injury which has kept him out of the ring this year
Joe Joyce makes his return to the ring against experienced heavyweight campaigner Christian Hammer next weekend.
The ‘Juggernaut’ had been expected to square off in an eagerly-anticipated clash against former world champion Joseph Parker, before the New Zealander signed with Sky Sports, putting that deal on hold.
Promoter Ben Shalom earlier this week revealed he has made an offer to stage the fight on Sky Sports Box Office later this year, but Joyce also has his eyes on the winner of Oleksandr Usyk vs Anthony Joshua, while Top Rank promoter Bob Arum has talked up a showdown against Tyson Fury.
Joyce, unbeaten in 13 outings, claimed an impressive knockout win over Carlos Takam last July, having stopped heavyweight prospect Daniel Dubois the previous year.
Joe Joyce returns to the ring next weekend against heavyweight Christian Hammer
He had been set to fight Joseph Parker (right) before the eagerly-anticipated bout fell through
The 36-year-old hasn’t been as active as he would have liked, however, in part due to a wrist injury – which he has now recovered from – which kept him out of the ring earlier this year.
Hammer certainly knows his way around a ring, having been in with the likes of Fury, the Gypsy King’s cousin Hughie, Luis Ortiz and Alexander Povetkin, though losing on each occasion.
The 34-year-old needed under a round to stop journeyman Drazan Janjanin in May, having lost on points to Frank Sanchez earlier in the year. Joyce is expected to come through the test with little trouble.
As the spectacle edges ever closer, Sportsmail takes you through everything you need to know.
When is Joe Joyce vs Christian Hammer?
The clash between Joyce and Hammer is scheduled to take place on Saturday, July 2 at The SSE Arena in London.
The pair are expected to walk to the ring at around 10pm UK time, though that will of course depend on results beforehand, with an abundance of action also taking place on the undercard.
Also on the card is an eagerly-anticipated bout between European super-bantamweight champion Jason Cunningham and two-weight world champion Zolani Tete.
Callum Johnson will also take to the ring for the first time this year as he fights Igor Mikhalkin for the WBC Silver light-heavyweight title.
How to watch the fight
The fight, which will be a 12-round contest, will be broadcast live on BT Sport.
Those not subscribed to BT Sport can sign up for a contract-free monthly pass for a price of £25. Viewers can then also stream the fight using their app or web player.
Alternatively, there are a number of BT Sport packages you can sign up for HERE.
Sportsmail will also be covering the fight live, so you can keep up-to-date with us.
Joyce vs Hammer: The key stats
Height: 6ft 6in
Height: 6ft 2.5in
Joyce claimed an impressive stoppage win over Carlos Takam in his most recent outing last
Hammer has lost nine of 36 feats, including a stoppage defeat to Hughie Fury last year
Fight card in full
- Joe Joyce vs Christian Hammer
- Jason Cunningham vs Zolani Tete
- Callum Johnson vs Igor Mikhalkin
- Nathan Heaney vs Nizar Trimech
- Mark Chamberlain vs Marc Vidal
- Micky Burke vs Serge Ambomo
- Henry Turner vs TBA
- Tommy Fletcher vs Darryl Sharp
- Arnold Obodai vs TBA
What’s been said?
Joyce, who has been training in Las Vegas ahead of the bout, insisted the test against Hammer will provide good preparation for a bigger challenge further down the line.
‘I’ve known about Christian Hammer for a while now,’ he said. ‘He has fought everybody, it is going to be a good fight, he comes forward and it will be exciting. It is one to get me ready for the next fights coming up.
‘I’ve been out of the ring for a whole year now so it will be good to dust off the gloves and shake off the cobwebs.
Joyce insists his bout against Hammer will help prepare him for the bigger challenges to come
The ‘Juggernaut’ is looking to take on the winner of Oleksandr Usyk vs Anthony Joshua
‘It is going to be a big year, this year and next, with some great fights and I just need to be in the right place.’
Joyce has also called out former sparring partner Joshua in the build-up to the fight.
He said: ‘If by some miracle Joshua beats Usyk, he will have to face me or vacate the belt.
‘His chin has gone and I don’t think his heart is fully in the game any more – he’s a businessman more interested in lecturing students.’