Step-up confirmed for Davey Oliver Joyce

Rio Olympian Davey Oliver Joyce [6(5)-0] will take a step-up in rounds and opposition this Saturday night in Belfast.

The Mullingar super featherweight features on the undercard of Carl Frampton’s clash with Nonito Donaire at the SSE Odyssey Arena and will face his toughest pro opponent so far.

In what will be his first eight-rounder, Joyce will take on Sunderland’s Jordan Ellison [9(1)-13(3)] on the big Queensberry bill.

One of the most dangerous away fighters on the British circuit, the 22-year-old has caused numerous upsets over the years. In total, he has taken the undefeated records of six fighters and his only stoppage or whitewash losses have come to Zelfa Barrett, Jordan Gill, and British champion Lewis Ritson.

Back in 2016, Ellison won the hearts of BoxNation viewers with his performance versus George Jupp who was returning from a WBO interim title loss to Miguel Berchelt. The Northerner lost 78-76 that night but most, including Jupp, felt he did enough to win.

Singled out as one of’s favourite ‘away’ fighters, Ellison will be familiar to Irish fans having given Commonwealth silver medalist Joe Fitzpatrick a huge scare in 2016 in a four-rounder at the York Hall, dropping him and being edged out by a point, as well as sharing a round with Jono Carroll.

Joyce has been kept busy since debuting last June, scoring three solid wins initially but seeing his level of opposition drop afterwards. Thankfully, Ellison represents a significant step-up for the Pete Taylor-trained 31-year-old who will be looking to progress through the levels rapidly this year and beyond.

While Joyce will fight in an eight-rounder for the first time professionally this Saturday, he has done so twice before on the AIBA Pro Boxing Circuit – losing a controversial 77-75 decision to Uzbek Hurshid Tojabaev and winning a second-round technical decision versus Olympic champion Robson Conceicao after suffering a cut.

The reveal of Ellison as Joyce’s opponent leaves Marco McCullough as the sole remaining Irish fighter without a known opponent for this weekend. The Belfast featherweight was due to box Jono Carroll, but ‘King Kong’ has pulled out with a cut.

Also on the undercard, Lewis Crocker faces Scott James [1(0)-2(2)], Steven Ward boxes Michael Ciach [1(1)-4(1)], Tyrone McCullagh is up against Elvis Guillen [9(6)-36(8)-4], and there are all-Irish clashes between Luke Keeler and Conrad Cummings, and Anto Upton and Tyrone McKenna.

Photo Credit: Ricardo Guglielminotti – The Fighting Irish (@ThefIrish)


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Joe O'Neill

Reporting on Irish boxing the past five years. Work has appeared on, Boxing News,, and local and national media. Provide live ringside updates, occasional interviews, and special features on the future of Irish boxing. email: