Nigerian-born British heavyweight boxing champion Anthony Joshua will now face Cameroonian-French boxer Carlos Takam after his fight with Kubrat Pulev was cancelled after the Bulgarian suffered an injury in training
According to Daily Mail, Pulev, 36, was due to challenge for Joshua’s International Boxing Federation and World Boxing Association heavyweight world titles on October 28 at Cardiff’s Principality Stadium but had to pull out due to injury.
Frenchman Takam, 36, who is ranked No.3 by the IBF, on Monday night finalised a deal to step in at late notice and will enter the fight as a heavy underdog.
Takam has 39 professional fights, won 35, 27 via knockouts, one draw and three losses.
He represented Cameroon at the 2004 Summer Olympics in Athens, Greece but was beaten in the round of sixteen by Egypt’s Mohamed Aly.
Speaking on Pulev’s withdrawal, Joshua’s promoter Eddie Hearn said: “I received a call late afternoon to inform me that Pulev had injured his shoulder and maybe ruled out of the fight – this was later confirmed by his doctor. IBF rules state that the mandatory will go to the next fighter in line which is Carlos Takam.
“When the Pulev fight was announced I made a deal with Takam’s team to begin camp and be on standby for this fight. When I called them they were overjoyed and good to go.
“It’s a difficult position for AJ (Joshua) having prepared meticulously for the style and height of Pulev, he now faces a completely different style and challenge in Takam – this hasn’t happened in his career before but he is ready for all comers on October 28.”