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Joshua to find Povetkin a problem

Joshua to find Povetkin a problem

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Anthony Joshua has pledged to put on a show against Alexander Povetkin on Saturday night after a below-par performance when taken the distance by Joseph Parker in his last outing.

‘AJ’ is seeking the 21st KO of his career but it will not be easy against the experienced Russian, who packs a real punch and is prepared to take the Brit into deep waters.

Over 8.5 rounds @ 6/5

The WBA ‘Super, WBO and IBF heavyweight champion tipped the scales at 17st 8lbs 5oz at Friday’s weigh-in, one stone and 10 pounds heavier than the challenger, who is a trim 15st 12lbs.

Joshua is only slightly heavier than when he stepped through the ropes to face Parker in March, with the Olympic gold medallist having trained with speed and durability in mind on that occasion.

The 28-year-old appears to have learned the lessons of coming in at over 18 stone for his clash with Carlos Takam, when it was all about power, and looks prepared to go the distance once more.

Joshua’s last three fights have gone over 10 rounds and Povetkin’s experience means it is unlikely to be an early finish for the would-be undisputed heavyweight king at Wembley.

Joshua via decision @ 11/4

The fight with Parker left more questions than answers for Joshua’s fans as he appeared timid for the first time in his career.

Joshua put his cautious approach down to Parker’s speed and has indicated he is once again worried about the quickness of his opponent given Povetkin’s weight.

The Brit would certainly be wise to treat the Russian with caution with regard to the sledgehammer of a left hook he possesses.

Povetkin has only lost once in his 35 fight career and that was to Wladimir Klitschko in his prime.

The 39-year-old has since gone on to stop six of his eight opponents, including Takam, Manuel Charr and a brutal knockout of David Price.

At 6ft 2in, Povetkin is used to being the smaller man so giving away four inches in height to Joshua won’t bother him.

The heavyweight champ also appears to have issues putting away smaller opponents, finding Takam a real challenge before being taken the distance by Parker.

This looks a tricky fight on paper – despite Joshua being the 2/25 favourite – and with Povetkin (7/1) having never been stopped, the price on a points win is tempting.

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Chris Rivers An experienced journalist, Chris is very knowledgeable on a host of different sports and often focuses on NFL, boxing and Formula One. Chris is also a regular at the Emirates Stadium, which adds to his knowledge of top flight and European football.