Anthony Joshua admits a loss to new challenger, Carlos Takam could damage his legacy for a lifetime.
The British boxer defends his IBF heavyweight title and WBA ‘super’ against a new challenger in Takam, after Kubrat Pulev pulled out due to injuries.
And Joshua who goes into the bout on December 17 with a perfect record of 19 victories all coming via knockout fears what a loss to Takam will do to his record.
He told Sky Sports News: “In boxing, I think it’s a sport that’s unforgiving in the sense that, if Takam beat me that loss will stay on my record for a lifetime, that will always be in my legacy.
“It’s not ‘oh, he was a world champion and he done well for the sport of boxing. No, no, no he was 19-1 – that’s Anthony’s legacy and I just don’t want that blemish on my record right now.”
“Takam is already as tough as they come,” said Joshua. “He’s so tough. He just keeps on walking forward and that’s disheartening for a fighter.
“When I’m in there with him, it will be interesting to see how game and ready he is, and what fire he is ready to go through.
“I’ve had some sparring partners that have been coming and trying to knock me out and I’ve had to dig in a bit and give them a few body shots back and so on.
“My inside game has definitely improved, so I think if we have to stand on the inside and start trading off, it will definitely be an entertaining fight for the people watching.
“People have said ‘Joshua what round?’ I think we’re going for a 10 to 12 round here you know. This guy’s head is like a block of cement.”