Joe Cordina admits he is taking a “big step up” when he battles Andy Townend for the WBA international belt on the Anthony Joshua-Joseph Parker bill in Cardiff.
The Welsh lightweight has racked up six wins since turning professional and will target his first title against the experienced Townend on the undercard for Joshua’s world heavyweight unification clash with Parker at the Principality Stadium on March 31, live on Sky Sports Box Office.
Townend, nicknamed ‘The KO kid’, is a former super-featherweight champion and Welshman Cordina admits he needs to raise his standards in front of a huge crowd in his home city.
“This is the perfect fight for me to start 2018,” said Cordina. “It’s a big step up for me. Andy is a proven fighter, just look at his record – there’s a lot of knockouts against some decent names.
Townend displayed his threat when he stopped Jon Kays in Sheffield last May
“There’s no doubting he’s dangerous, so I’ll have to bring my A-game. I think I’m more than capable of beating him to win my first title, but I’m sure he thinks similar, it’s a good fight for the fans.”
Cordina fought on the undercard for Joshua’s last world title win over Carlos Takam, closing out a comfortable four-round points win, although he is prepared for a more testing encounter on this occasion.
“I’m more than comfortable going the championship distance,” said Cordina. “I live and train with three-weight world champion Ricky Burns, who is such an inspiration. Whatever he does, I do. You ask anyone how hard he trains and I’m holding my own fitness wise.
“I don’t want to be chucked in to any old fights. They have got to be the right fights at the right time and this is certainly one of those. When my trainer Tony Sims says it’s time to come off the leash and push on, we’ll do so.”
In the main event, Joshua will put his WBA ‘super’ and IBF belts at stake against WBO title-holder Parker in a battle of two unbeaten champions.
Alexander Povetkin, a potential future opponent for Joshua, will also appear on the undercard as he battles Britain’s David Price.
And Ryan Burnett defends his WBA ‘super’ bantamweight title against mandatory challenger Yonfrez Parejo.
Watch the Anthony Joshua vs Joseph Parker world heavyweight title unification fight, from Principality Stadium, Cardiff, on March 31, live and exclusive on Sky Sports Box Office.
Anthony Joshua faces Joseph Parker on March 31, live on Sky Sports Box Office. Only one champion will keep their unbeaten record and the belts!