Whilst female boxing in the West has often been of predictable mismatches, doing little more than promoting one fighter as something special whilst essentially sharing the ring with someone far beneath them, we have seen several interesting upsets in Asian boxing. For example Mika Iwakawa over-coming Nao Ikeyama for the WBO Atomweight title and Shione Ogata out pointing Erika Hanawa.
For us though the upset that stood out the most was a win for Thai fighter Jutamas Jitpong, who over-came Casey Morton on December 15th in Yubei, China, for the WBO Asia Pacific Super Flyweight title
Going in to the bout Morton was 7-0-3(1), she had won the Flyweight version of the title 9 months earlier and was facing a Thai 20 year old who was 4-2 (2) who had lost in February to the then 1-0 Olga Gurova. Through Jutamas's career, prior to facing Morton, she had gone 1-2 when fighting outside of Thailand.
Against Morton we saw Jutamas out box, out punch and out move Morton.
The only one blotch on this upset was that it was later revealed that Morton had been ill in the build up to the fight and wasn't 100%, that however was not Jutamas' fault.
In China earlier today fight fans saw Casey Morton (7-1-3, 1) come up short against Jutamas Jitpong (5-2, 2) in a battle for the WBO Asia Pacific female Super Flyweight title, and a potential to move towards a shot at German world champion Raja Amasheh.
On paper this looked like an easy win for the unbeaten Morton, who is an Hawaiian fighter who has fought many of her recent bouts in Asia. Jitpong however hadn't read the script and came with her own ambition to win, something that should have been expected given the tough bout she gave Yuko Henzan in Japan last year.
Through much of the bout Morton was the aggressor, marching forward and looking to make life incredibly tough for the Thai. To her credit however Jitpong proved to have the skills to eat up the pressure and fire back with some very solid shots of her own, doing a lot more than just surviving. In fact Jitpong was out boxing the aggressive Morton who was struggling to close the distance or connect with any regularity on the Thai who found Casey repeatedly with her shots.
It seemed like Morton realised that this was a lot tougher, than expected and as we went into the final rounds she really amped up the pressure. With more intensity in her work Morton began to find the Thai with more regularity, though ate uppercuts on a frequent basis as she marched in. When this happened Jitpong chose to stand her ground more and dig her toes into the canvas to try and get Morton's respect. This lead to a thrilling 10th round, with Morton really just throwing caution to the wind and hurting the Thai several times as she looked for a finish, though time ran out on her late charge.
As we went to the judge it seemed clear that Jitpong felt she had done more than enough whilst Morton looked very much like a fighter who knew she had to do more.
As we went to the score cards the first one read 94-96, before being followed by two scores of 91-99, all in favour of Jitpong who takes the biggest win of her career.
Morton did put in a good performance overall, though it seems like she would be better off fighting at her natural Flyweight, rather than Super Flyweight. For Jitpong it seems like the weight suits her, though there is still a lot of work to do before she gets a world title fight.
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