Anthony Joshua vs Alexander Povetkin: Predictions from the man that has taken on both fighters and lost, Carlos Takam

Joshua and Povetkin have both stopped Takam in the tenth round 

Jack Watson
Wednesday 19 September 2018 16:47
Anthony Joshua focusing on cementing his legacy

There’s one man who is positioned to compare Anthony Joshua and Alexander Povetkin better than anybody else: Carlos Takam, who has been beaten by both fighters.

Joshua and Povetkin have both won against Takam on their way to Saturday’s heavyweight clash at Wembley with IBF, IBO, WBA and WBO titles on the line. Joshua (October 2017) and Povetkin (October 2014) both stopped the Cameroon-born heavyweight in the tenth round, although the Russian fighter beat him in a more emphatic fashion.

Takam refused to declare who is likely to win, but hinted that Joshua is in a good position to beat arguable his toughest opponent since stopping Wladimir Klitschko.

“It is going to be a beautiful fight,” Takam told Sky Sports. “Everyone knows that the best heavyweight is Joshua, but the best man will win.

“I don’t think Povetkin should start slowly, and he can’t start strong either because otherwise he is going to tire himself out too quickly. He had to start at a good pace, and has to be there, in it, at every moment. If he starts slowly he is going to get slaughtered by Joshua.”

Povetkin has a powerful punch from close range – just ask David Price who was sent to the canvas in colossal-style in his previous fight – and Takam says it is something Joshua needs be aware of. “People talk about the left, but it is right hook" that Takam declared the Russian's best weapon. "He uses the right really well when he’s up close.

“His [Joshua’s] best punch is his jab. Very good and very hard. It is his best weapon,” he said.

“I boxed Povetkin a long time ago and Joshua not long ago, so I can’t remember how it went [against Povetkin]. I’ve forgotten if he hits hard or not.”

The decision to declare Carlos Takam unable to continue against Anthony Joshua was criticised

Takam’s answer to which boxer is the better defender is much more straightforward response. “I think Anthony’s the best,” he said. “He moves a lot when he has to defend, but Povetkin stays on the spot when he has to. It is better to move around than to stay on the spot, so Anthony defends better.

“We all have weaknesses, but I think Joshua's weakness is himself. He is a good boxer who is used to winning and he finds solutions how to do so, but if he can't find a way, he becomes vulnerable.

“When he can't work out a solution to break down a good defence, against his opponent, he becomes vulnerable and is a bit all over the place. But if he can work out that solution in a fight, his boxing is really good.”

Saturday’s bout appears to be falling short of a sell-out crowd at Wembley, but Joshua will still have over 70,000 fans backing him, something Takam knows all about and says Povetkin will be able to handle such an occasion.

“I don't think it will affect him. I know that these boxers are used to fighting at home, but I think that he is prepared for this. He has the Russian mentality and he is not going to give up just because he is not in front of his public. It is not going to affect him and, on the contrary, it is going to lift him because he's going to be saying, 'I am facing a challenge and I need to show that I am the best'. He is going to box well.

“England or the UK has the best atmosphere, it is the best sporting atmosphere in the world. In France, in Germany it's special, but in the UK the supporters are incredible. It is crazy to fight in front of those supporters who are shouting, applauding and cheering; and what is incredible with the British fans is they are honest.”

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