According to a report by Mail, Anthony Joshua had predicted it would take him 10 rounds to break down Carlos the Parisian jackal with a cement head. So it proved. Although the defeated Monsieur Takam was not alone in complaining that Anthony Joshua had not been allowed to finish the job.
The unheralded Afro-Frenchman was bleeding from cuts above both eyes as Joshua unloaded in the 10th round under the roof of Cardiff’s Principality Stadium. But Takam was still ducking, weaving and throwing back the occasional punch when referee Phil Edwards called a halt. The 20th straight knock-out. Another victory hammered out on a night of blood and thrills. Still the heavyweight champion of the world.
But when this gallant challenger threw down the gauntlet again by demanding a rematch, Anthony Joshua’s army cheered as lustily for him as for the man they had turned out in such numbers as to smash the attendance record for this hallowed Welsh ground. Joshua told them: “For all of you who wanted to see him unconscious on the floor, it was unfortunate that the referee stopped the fight. But that wasn’t my decision. I did my job and it was a good fight.”
It was also more gruelling than it really should have been and he will need to seal up the holes in his defence before he goes for giants who carry nuclear power in their fists. Joshua and his promoter Eddie Hearn promised to give his growing multitude the big-name opponents they want next year, America’s big-punching WBC world champion Deontay Wilder to the forefront among them and Tyson Fury also qualifying for a mention.
Not all of them are likely to prove as tough a nut to crack as the short, crouching Takam who not only took Joshua’s howitzers but landed enough jaw-rattlers of his own to make a real fight of it. He was put down on one knee early on but recovered to win rounds of his own. Cut and under the hammer though he was in the tenth, should he have been allowed to continue?
The stoppage was a mite premature and just before Joshua reprised the late assault, which pulled the Wladimir Klitschko fight out of the fire at Wembley six months ago as he was beginning to weary. Not surprising since his breathing had hampered since round two by the collision with Takam’s forehead, which damaged his nose. But the warning signs of potentially serious damage were flashing at the finish and Takam was probably saved to fight another day. Perhaps back here, since the Cardiff assembly found space for him in their hearts alongside Joshua.
But not until our WBA and IBF world champion has taken his shots at completely unifying all the heavyweight titles. All roads led to Cardiff, even though many of them were closed and the main-line railway arteries were blocked by untimely track repairs.
They found their way, in their tens of thousands, in expectation of shattering the attendance record for the Principality Stadium set at 74,600 for European rugby’s 2002 Heineken Cup Final. It certainly looked as if they had done that. Even up in the high, dark eves of the roof not an empty seat was visible. Such is the Pied Piper magnetism of Joshua. Culled from Mail