The inside story of when Daniel Dubois sparred Joe Joyce aged just 17 on Team GB and the surprise at ‘Dynamite’ taking the ‘Mike Tyson route’ to their fight

2 weeks ago
18 Views

Daniel Dubois and Joe Joyce are set to face off in a monumental clash for the British and European heavyweight titles at the end of the month.

However, this blockbuster battle was not in either man’s wildest imaginations when their paths first crossed all the way back in 2014.

There was plenty of valuable experience for Dubois sparring with the other heavyweights on Team GB, including one future heavyweight champion of the world

Frazer Clarke – Twitter

There was plenty of valuable experience for Dubois sparring with the other heavyweights on Team GB, including one future heavyweight champion of the world

Dubois, now 23, was a mere teenager at the time and had only just broken into the GB setup.

The aim for all young British heavyweights was to eventually reach the position of being top dog on the squad and, as a result, represent the country at the Olympics.

This ‘top dog’ position had recently been vacated by Anthony Joshua who’d won gold at London 2012 and subsequently turned professional.

As Dubois arrived, he found Joyce was the man who’d taken AJ’s place.

Joyce went to Rio 2016

Getty Images – Getty

Joyce went to Rio 2016

“I sparred him when I was about 17, so it’s practise,” Dubois told talkSPORT.com.

“I was just coming through the juniors and this guy was getting ready for the Olympics.

“I was giving them all problems, don’t get me wrong, but that’s back then, I’m a different fighter now.

“A different animal.”

Dubois is 15-0 (14 KOs) as a pro

Getty Images – Getty

Dubois is 15-0 (14 KOs) as a pro

Regarding their relationship, Joyce, now 35, recalled: “It was good enough. He was obviously a lot younger than me.

“I was closer in ages to, and used to share a room with, Frazer Clarke on the squad. Obviously I’d been sparring Joshua for the Olympics and stuff.

“Daniel got on a bit later. I think he did the junior Olympics and stuff like that, one of those competitions.

“He got on the squad, and him and Nathan Gorman were more competitive with each other.

“Every now and then he’d come in and spar us but he was still young. What, 18? 19? Even younger than that.

“Yeah, we had lots of rounds sparring, he helped me get ready for Rio 2016. It was really good sparring leading up to the games.”

Joyce is 11-0 (10 KOs) as a pro

Getty

Joyce is 11-0 (10 KOs) as a pro

Joyce eventually took silver in Rio, losing a close and controversial final to France’s Tony Yoka.

Like Joshua, he then elected to turn professional, but was surprised to find out Dubois did the same.

“I thought it would be a competitive fight to the finish between him and Frazer Clarke to go to Tokyo 2020, but then he turned pro,” Joyce remarked.

“I think Gorman went pro first and then Dubois went. I was quite surprised.

“With his age, he could even have stayed on and did the next one in 2024. Twenty six would be a perfect age to turn pro and then he’s got all of that experience.

“Obviously he chose to do like a Mike Tyson route and start a lot younger.”

Dubois vs Joyce is one of the most highly anticipated fights of the year

Getty Images – Getty

Dubois vs Joyce is one of the most highly anticipated fights of the year

Despite the fact the pair have shared the ring on multiple occasions and clearly been eyeing each other for several years, Dubois is adamant no emotions will come into play on November 28.

“No [it’s not personal],” he insisted.

“It’s 100 per cent just business and going out there with the intentions I have to completely decimate him, destroy him.

“Take away what he’s got, take away his fans, they’ll become my fans after I take all the glory away from him.

“Then I move on to bigger and better things.”

Download the talkSPORT App and listen to live and exclusive coverage of Daniel Dubois vs Joe Joyce on Saturday, November 28.

Let’s block ads! (Why?)

Boxing – talkSPORT

Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Translate »