The Weekender

Heavyweight contender Joe Joyce towers over Christian Hammer.

Top of the bill tonight is the international heavyweight clash between Britain’s Joe ‘Juggernaut’ Joyce and German-based Romanian Christian Hammer.

The Queensberry card at Wembley Arena, London will pit the world ranked and Rio Olympics silver medallist Joyce (13-0, 12 KO’s) against heavyweight gatekeeper Hammer (27-9, 17 KO’s). Londoner, Joyce, is highly ranked by all world sanctioning bodies but not fought since July 2021 in winning against Carlos Takam by sixth round stoppage. However, he’s ideally placed once the shakeout of the Oleksandr Usyk, Anthony Joshua, Tyson Fury triangle reaches conclusion, being in pole position to face the winner. Now 36 years old, Joyce doesn’t have much time to cash in but a win tonight is essential to maintain momentum and that championship aspiration.

Hammer, 34, has fought in good company, going eight rounds with Tyson Fury in 2015 and facing Cuban heavyweight challenger Luis Ortiz and Rio Olympic gold medallist Tony Yoka in recent years. In all these contests he’s come up short, but the fact the matches have been made shows his level. He’s normally durable but limited.

The heavy hitting Joyce, at 6’6″ and having a solid jab, should make good use of these advantages and make easy work of Hammer. We expect a stoppage around the fourth.

The card also features an interesting super-bantamweight contest between Britain’s Jason Cunningham (31-6, 7 KO’s) and South Africa’s former two-weight world champion Zolani Tete (29-4, 22 KO’s). Cunningham is the current European champion at 122lbs (8st, 10lbs) and Tete trying to rebuild after being stopped early by John Riel Casimero in 2019. We see this going the full distance and Cunningham likely eeking out a close decision victory.

The card will be shown live in the UK on BT Sport from 19:00 BST and main event on ESPN in the US.

Enjoy your fight night.

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