2003-Sirmongkol Singwancha defeats Yong Soo Choi to retain WBC crown!
The career of both Sirimongkol Singwancha and Yong Soo Choi have been, strange to say the least, and it should really be no surprise that the two crossed over at some point, as they did on January 13th 2003.
Sirimongkol turned professional in 1994, and last fought in September 2018, yes he had a 24 year career, during which he moved from Flyweight to Light Heavyweight, winning the WBC Bantamweight and Super Bantamweight titles. Choi on the other hand debuted in 1990 and last fought in Februar 2017, a 27 year career! Like Sirimongkol the Korean was a top Super Featherweight, holding the WBA title for almost 4 years back in the 1990's.
In 2003 they clashed, at the Korakuen Hall with Sirimongkol taking a clear decision win over the Korean, in what would be Choi's last bout for 13 years, before start a strange comeback in 2016. Interestingly this would be Sirimongkol's last successful defense of the title, as he lost it just 7 months later to Jesus Chavez, before moving through the weights and fighting in weight classes he should never have been in.
Choi's record, at the time of writing, is 31-4-1 (21) whilst Sirimongkol has notched up 100 fights, with a record of 96-4 (61).
1996-Hi Yong Choi loses WBA title to Carlos Murillo
On this day in 1996 Korean fighter Hi Yong Choi lost the WBA Light Flyweight title to Panama's Carlos Murrillo. At the time was having his second reign as a world champion, having taken the belt from Hiroki Ioka in February 1995, but it would end with a clear decision loss to Murillo, and it seemed clear that Choi wasn't the fighter he had once been.
Murrillo's reign was a short one. He successfully defended the belt once before losing it to former Choi foe Keiji Yamaguchi in May 1996. Murrillo would lose again to Yamaguchi in a rematch and round in the mid 00's with a record of 38-11-1 (29), going 5-9-1 (2) following his win over Choi.
The loss sent Choi into retirement at the age of 32, which in fairness is pretty old for a smaller fighter. Upon retirement Choi had a record of 19-2 (8), had held the WBA titles at Minimumweight and Light Flyweight and gone 7-2 (2) in world title fights.
1990-In Chul Baek defeats Yoshiaki Tajima to retain
When we think of the great Korean punchers few challenge In Chul Baek, who had an 86% KO rate when he retired. His final win, and final successful defense of the WBA Super Middleweight title, came on this day in 1990, when he stopped Japanese challenger Yoshiaki Tajima.
Tajima was a pretty unfit challenger to take on Baek, with a record of 9-4-1 (5). Much of Tajima's career had come at Middleweight, where he had won the Japanese and OPBF titles, but was taking a huge step up in class to take on the 46-2 (42) Baek. To his credit Tajima proved to be tough, but end up retiring after round 7 to give Baek his second defense of the title.
For Tajima this would be the end of his career and he would retire 9-5-1 (5), and it would also be his sole stoppage loss. Baek on the other hand would fight once more, losing the title to French fighter Christophe Tiozzo less than 3 months after his bout with Tajima. After losing he too would retire, with a record of 47-3 (43)