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Dublin: 8°C Wednesday 14 April 2021

Anthony Joshua's opponent ruled out but world title bout will still go ahead

The heavyweight champion now meets number three-ranked Carlos Takam in Cardiff later this month.

Joshua and Pulev.
Joshua and Pulev.
Image: Nick Potts

WORLD HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPION Anthony Joshua will not fight Kubrat Pulev on 28 October.

The unbeaten English boxer (19-0) was due to face the experienced Bulgarian (25-1) in a WBA Super and IBF heavyweight title defence at Cardiff’s 78,000-capacity Principality Stadium, which is expected to be a sell-out.

However, Pulev suffered a shoulder injury during sparring while training in Germany recently, and it has been confirmed tonight that he has been ruled out of the bout.

With just 12 days to go, promoter Eddie Hearn has secured a replacement as 36-year-old Carlos Takam will now step into the ring.

“I received a call from Kalle Sauerland 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,” said Hearn in a statement issued today.

IBF rules state that the mandatory will go to the next fighter in line which is Carlos Takam.

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“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 this evening they were overjoyed and good to go.”

Third in the IBF rankings, the Cameroonian-French fighter (34-3-1) was next in line for a mandatory title shot.

Takam’s last victory was back in January, when he won the vacant IBF Inter-Continental heavyweight belt with a fourth-round knockout of Poland’s Marcin Rekowski.

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