This past Saturday in Thailand fans had the chance to see the latest show in the IBF Silk Road tournament. It was a show that was streamed by the IBF, free over Youtube, but the stream was nigh on unwatchable. Sadly. However it was a good show, with several very good bouts.
The tournament bouts began at Super Bantamweight, where Pipat Chaiporn (45-12-2, 28), aka Mike Tawatchai, and Filipino Eugene Lagos (15-5-3, 10) fought to a 10 round majority draw. It was a hotly contested bout, and had it not been in Thailand there's a good chance Lagos would have got the nod. Sadly with the bout taking place in Thailand it did seem like the local got the benefit of the doubt and got the draw as a result.
The second bout saw former OPBF Featherweight champion Ryo Takenaka (18-3-1, 11) [竹中 良] take a TKO win over Filipino Lorence Rosas (9-2-2, 3), in a Super Featherweight bout. Rosas unfortunately pulled out of the bout after round 5, giving Takenaka the win. This was the first time Rosas hadn't been stopped, though questions need to be asked as to why he was fighting at 130lbs here, especially in such a notable tournament.
The third bout saw local veteran a contest between Komsan Polsan (36-10-1, 22), aka Patomsuk Pathompothong, suffer a decision loss to unbeaten Uzbek Dostonbek Turdiev (7-0, 5) over 10 rounds. Turdiev was too active and too hungry for the Thai, who really has been incredibly disappointing the last few years, and we do wonder what his career has left to offer.
Thankfully the locals did get a reason to celebrate as Sukpraserd Ponpitak (22-9, 14), aka Sukkasem Kietyongyuth, took a close decision win over the previously unbeaten Filipino Joseph Ambo (8-1-1, 6) to progress to the next round of the tournament.
We're hoping that when the next round of the tournament is held the IBF will provide a much more stable stream than they gave us here, as it really was terrible.
Tomorrow we'll see the IBF Silk Road Tournament hit Thailand, with the team responsible for the IBF Silk Road tournaments working alongside Kiatkreerin to host the show.
After weeks of waiting we now, finally have the running order for the show, which appears to feature 6 bouts in total, including a female bout and a Muay Thai bout.
Among the fights on this show are the previously reported contest between former OPBF Featherweight champion Ryo Takenaka (17-3-1, 10) [竹中 良] and Lorence Rosas (9-2-2, 3), a bout between Pipat Chaiporn (45-12-1, 28), aka Mike Tawatchai, and Filipino Eugene Lagos (15-5-2, 10), a contest between Komsan Polsan (36-9-1, 22), aka Patomsuk Pathompothong, and the unbeaten Dostonbek Turdiev (6-0, 5) of Uzbekistan and Sukpraserd Ponpitak (21-9, 14), aka Sukkasem Kietyongyuth Joseph ambo (8-0-1, 6), of the Philippines.
Fans wanting to watch this card will want to tune into Thairath, channel 32, tomorrow night.
Yesterday we were informed that former OPBF Featherweight champion Ryo Takenaka (17-3-1, 10) [竹中 良] will be back in the ring on December 8th.
At the time details were scarce though we have now been informed that the bout will be part of the 2018 IBF Silk Road Championship Tournament, and will see him take on Lorence Rosas (9-2-2, 3) in a 10 rounder.
The bout between the two is supposed to be part of a tournament, though at the moment very few other details have emerged. To our understanding however Thailand's Mike Tawatchai (45-12-1, 28) [ไมค์เกษตรพัฒนา] is also involved in the tournament.
This will be Takenaka's second bout since losing the OPBF title to Sa Myung Noh in June 2017, following a recent victory over Vergil Puton. It will also be his first bout outside of Japan, something that seemed to be key to his entry in this competition. For Rosas this will be his first bout in Thailand, and in fact his first bout since losing in August, in Japan, to Omrri Bolivar.
Back in September we saw Filipino fighter Edward Heno (11-0-5, 5) travel to Japan and stop Seita Ogido (11-3-3, 3) [荻堂 盛太] to claim the OPBF Light Flyweight title, doing so in impressive fashion following a draw with Ogido earlier in the year. Sadly for the new champion his reign has already come to an end with a report from the Philippines saying that Heno has been stripped, and boxrec also listing a vacant title fight later this year.
Apparently Heno will be unable to defend the belt at the OPBF convention in November, and rather than the OPBF showing some common sense they have decided to strip the champion and set up a bout between Rey Loreto (23-14, 15) and Ivan Soriano (16-1-1, 8), which will take place on November 10th at the Puerto Princesa Coliseum, in Palawan.
The decision to strip Heno is based on the fighter wanting to spend time with his sick son, and not having enough time to prepare for a fighter like Loreto, especially given that the Heno fight was only a few weeks earlier. The logical idea of having an interim title fight between Loreto and Soriano seems to have passed the OPBF by, despite the fact the same show will have an OPBF "interim" Featherweight title fight on it between Lorence Rosas (8-1-2, 2) and Jelbirt Gomera (12-4, 6), with Gomera getting the shot on the back of 3 successive losses to Asian opponents.
Although the OPBF seem to be hiding behind their rule book, the decision is certainly one that doesn't appear to have been made in great faith and leaves the body open to a lot of questions about their treatment of fighters, like Heno.
(Story originally broken by the fantastic Ryan Songalia of Rappler, with his full story available here)
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