Anthony Joshua admits a world title defeat against new challenger Carlos Takam could tarnish his legacy “for a lifetime”.
The unbeaten 27-year-old will defend his WBA ‘super’ and IBF heavyweight titles against Takam, who replaced the injured Kubrat Pulev as the next opponent for Joshua in Cardiff on October 28.
Joshua is proud of his perfect professional record, with all 19 of his victories coming by knockout, and fears that Takam would damage his reputation permanently with a shock win at the Principality Stadium.
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.”
The France-based Cameroonian has demonstrated his durability throughout his career, only suffering one stoppage defeat in 39 fights with 27 knockout wins to his name.
Joshua revealed he is feeling extra pressure after being forced to prepare for Takam at short notice and believes he could be facing another brutal battle, a few months on from his 11th-round knockout of Wladimir Klitschko at Wembley.