Former WBC heavyweight champion Bermane Stiverne (25-3-1, 21 KOs) is training very hard for what is certainly a must-win fight against rising prospect Joe Joyce (7-0, 7 KOs), who won an Olympic silver medal in 2016.
Their fight takes place on February 23 at the O2 Arena in London, as part of the James DeGale vs. Chris Eubank undercard.
Stiverne has been inactive since getting knocked out by current WBC world champion Deontay Wilder in a single round back in November of 2017
Stiverne, who in his first contest with Wilder in 2015 was at that time the only man to take the feared puncher the full distance, believes it wasn’t really him in the second contest.
The former champ has promised to show his true self, in the contest with Joyce – which the 4-year-old veteran believes he will win by knockout.
“I wish to apologize to my fans and supporters for sending an impostor into the ring when I challenged for the world title against Deontay Wilder for the world title in my last fight,” Stiverne said.
“That was not me but a shadow of myself. A fraud a fakir. Someone else. My mind was not attached to my body. My heart was not in the fight. I was there in name only.
Following the bout I searched my soul and vowed I would either never fight again or dedicate my life – as never before- to regaining my world heavyweight title. I decided to go after the championship.
“With every ounce of my being I have dedicated myself to this comeback. I have worked spiritually, mentally, personally and physically to this goal. I have gone to the mountains, the desert, dieted, lived a life of sacrifice and deprivation to mold myself into a fighting machine.
I have boxed a thousand rounds, run hundreds of miles and worked my body into the greatest shape of my career in pursuit of my world heavyweight title. My frustration and anger are at the bursting point. I have worked my body into a machine of destruction.”