BoxingOther Sports

Nick Peet: Joe Joyce vs Carlos Takam preview

July 22, 2021January 7th, 2022

JOE Joyce returns this weekend with an opportunity to remind fight fans that his assent to heavyweight riches remains firmly on track, despite recent setbacks out of his control.

When the arbitrator presiding over the Tyson Fury – Deontay Wilder rematch lawsuit ruled in favour of the American back in May, the biggest loser appeared to be Anthony Joshua; robbed of an era-defining money-spinning unification fight with Fury.

But when AJ finally confirmed he was moving on with a sensational showdown of his own against former undisputed cruiserweight king Oleksander Usyk, it was Joyce whose career would be delayed most by the US lawmakers.

The former Olympic silver medallist enjoyed a breakthrough performance in November when he bucked the odds (although not this column) to school and retire Daniel Dubois in 10 inspired rounds.

With AJ-Fury on track at that point, Joyce was being lined up for a final eliminator against Usyk to matchup against the victor. But once Wilder’s lawyers landed their haymaker, even though the shot was aimed at Fury, it did the one thing no man has done in the ring: it knocked Joyce off his feet.

‘The Juggernaut’ now takes on Frenchman Carlos Takam at Wembley Arena on Saturday, the 39-5-1 veteran contender whose losses have largely come against quality opposition: former world champions Alexander Povetkin and Joseph Parker, challenging Joshua for his belts and the irrepressible Dereck Chisora.

The 35-year-old says: “Takam is a good move for me. It’s all about getting the right fights and this is one to get people talking. It will keep me ready too for when I get my turn to fight for the world title.”



“I’ll be going for the knockout finish – that’s what I am planning to do,” adds Joyce, who has stopped 11 of his 12 opponents. “I was ready to face Usyk, but I can be patient. Usyk is a tricky fight for Joshua, but he should knock him out sooner or later.”

Las Vegas-based Takam, 40, has been making all the right noises since arriving in London. He’s won four-straight since his 2018 loss to Chisora, a fight where he was ahead on the scorecards before getting caught and stopped.

A throwback heavyweight, the Frenchman is only six-foot-one but he’s built of stone and recovered from a flash knockdown early on against AJ to go 10 hard rounds before a controversial referee stoppage.

Joyce, however, may not be the quickest but hits as hard as any of the big boys and won’t find Takam hard to catch. Expect nothing short than Joyce all guns blazing and out to prove a point here – no judges required.

Takam should be dogged enough to pick himself up off the canvas and make it out of the first three rounds, but he won’t go much further than that as Triple-J puts his heavyweight rivals on notice.

TIP: Joyce by KO in rounds 4-6 (15/4)