Kubrat Pulev lost to Wladimir Klitschko in a previous unification bout. Photo: Fabian Bimmer, Reuters
Kubrat Pulev lost to Wladimir Klitschko in a previous unification bout. Photo: Fabian Bimmer, Reuters
Anthony Joshua has to face Kubrat Pulev before December 2 to avoid relinquishing the IBF belt. Photo: Nick Potts, PA via AP
Anthony Joshua has to face Kubrat Pulev before December 2 to avoid relinquishing the IBF belt. Photo: Nick Potts, PA via AP

SOFIA – Bulgarian Kubrat Pulev is confident of causing a major upset when he meets world heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua for the IBF title next month, confirming the fight will take place on October 28 in Cardiff.

“Anthony Joshua is a great and dangerous rival, but his style fits perfectly with mine,” the 36-year-old Pulev, who has only one loss in 26 fights, wrote on his page in Facebook on Monday.

“In boxing, the boxers’ styles dictate the match and there’ll be not many hugs, there will be a heavy boxing (on October 28).

“My preparations go very intensely because of the short time I have, and I will be perfectly ready when I get into the ring so that he has no chance against me.”

Joshua, who also holds the WBA and IBO titles, has been told he must face IBF mandatory challenger Pulev before December 2 or risk being stripped of that belt.

The 27-year-old Briton, undefeated in 19 fights, had been due to face Wladimir Klitschko in a rematch of their April bout, which Joshua won with an 11th-round knockout, but Klitschko has since announced his retirement.

Pulev, one of Bulgaria’s most popular sportsmen, turned professional at the age of 28 in September 2009, less than a year after winning the European amateur boxing title in Liverpool.

He has held the European heavyweight title twice between 2012 and 2016, and has challenged once for the unified world heavyweight title in 2014, losing to Klitschko in Hamburg on a fifth-round knockout.