By Chris Williamson
O2 Arena, London - Olympic silver medal winner Joe Joyce (4-0, 4 KOs) knocked out Lenroy Thomas in two short rounds to win the Commonwealth heavyweight title. A big left hand in the second round sent Thomas (22-5-1, 10 KOs) down for the full count.
Joyce, trained by veteran Cuban trainer Ismael Salas, was throwing big bombs from the very first round and Thomas had a lot of trouble trying to fight him off.
He continued to steamroll Thomas in the second round, throwing and landing very big shots to rock Thomas. Eventually Thomas went down in pain after a left hand, which initially appeared to be a body shot, and the referee counted him.
Because Joyce is already 32 years old, his promoter Richard Schaefer of Ringstar Sports wants to fast track him to a world title.
The target for Joyce next, is a showdown with the winner of the upcoming British title fight, between Hughie Fury and Sam Sexton.
If they are unable to get the winner of Fury vs. Sexton, the next option would be a collision with veteran heavyweight Dereck Chisora - who initially was the prime target for May 5, but rejected the monetary terms.
Also on the card, hot light-heavyweight prospect Joshua Buatsi stopped overmatched but tough Frenchman Stephane Cuevas in the fifth of an eight rounder.
Buatsi looked sharp, firing rapid combinations at Cuevas with his punches failing to significantly deter the visitor until a combination finished with two straight right hands had Cuevas sagging on the ropes, referee Jeff Hinds intervening 50 seconds into the fifth round.
Joshua (now 6-0) said afterwards it took too long to warm up tonight but that he’s working hard and looking to “take over the business”. Promoter Eddie Hearn said Buatsi would be stepped up to ten round fights and that he’ll schedule a fight for the prospect in New York as part of his fistic education.