Carlos Takam, the man who pushed Joseph Parker to the limit when they met in Auckland last year, will get his chance for glory on the world stage when he fights Anthony Joshua in Cardiff on October 28.

Frenchman Takam was kept on standby should Kubrat Pulev not be available to challenge Joshua for his IBF, WBA and IBO world heavyweight titles, and has leaped at the chance to fill in after the Bulgarian injured a shoulder in training.

Takam, the next mandatory challenger according to the IBF, will provide a test for Joshua in the Englishman's first fight since his epic victory over Wladimir Klitschko at Wembley in April.

The 36-year-old Takam, who has a 36-3-1 professional record, is very good defensively and can take a punch, but whether he has the attacking weapons to earn Joshua's respect remains to be seen. This will be Takam's first title fight and will be the first opponent that both Joshua and Parker have in common.


Many will rush to judge the relative merits of Joshua and New Zealander Parker, the WBO world champion, depending on the result at Principality Stadium (formerly Millennium Stadium).

Parker was slightly disappointed with his performance against Takam when winning by unanimous decision in South Auckland in May last year, a victory which guaranteed him a world title shot, and Joshua will be a favourite to continue his incredible run of knockout victories. Joshua has won all 19 of his professional fights inside the distance.

Parker described his fight against Takam as "12 rounds of war", and the eighth was as spectacular as any in the Kiwi's professional career.

After being wobbled in the fifth round, Parker recovered well and punished Takam in the eighth, throwing approximately 20 punches in several seconds. Takam staggered but remained on his feet and finished the round by responding with hard shots of his own.

"I felt like I had him in the eighth. I hit him with a lot of shots to the head," Parker said.

Parker has just returned to Auckland from a break in Samoa following his majority decision victory over Englishman Hughie Fury in Manchester last month. His next opponent has yet to be confirmed, but he is likely to fight again over the next two to three months.