The fight saw Ratchasi return to Japan, where he won the title earlier this year against Yutaka Oishi, and the Thai once again showed that he was continuing improving as a fighter.
The taller, longer, Petagine looked to make the most of his natural size advantages but the Thai was countering well, making the most of his heavy right hand. The Japanese fighter was looking relaxed, but Ratchasi looked determined and was landing the better blows, which helped him into the lead by the time the score cards were announced publically after 4 rounds, with scores of 40-36 and 39-37 in his favour, and a 38-38 card having the bout even.
Ratchai's success grew more success and in the middle rounds he really had a charge, with Petagine struggling to have more than just a few moments,. The fitness, and phsyiclaity of Ratchasi was proving too much for the challenger, and after 8 rounds the Thai was leading 79-72 on one card and 78-74 on the other two. With the scores it was clear that Jumbo was going to have to do something huge to turn the fight around. Sadly for the challenger that was never looking likely and instead it seemed like he was just tiring.
In round the Thai managed to press the action a bit more and that caused the towel to be thrown in to save Petagine, who had never previously been beyond 8 round, and it showed here.
For Ratchasi the bout was a third straight notable win, and although he's on a good run it's hard to see him as a long term champion. As a result we suspect we'll see other top Japanese fighters at 154lbs continue to try and get a bout with him, and the likes of Yuki Nonaka or Takeshi Inoue may well push their teams to get a fight with him before the end of 2017. For Petagine it's back to the drawing board, and time to develop his stamina and skills, before putting him in another notabe bout.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)