Earlier today fight fans tuning into Thairath for the return of western boxing to Thailand saw two notable bouts taking place, each featuring a bright hopeful for the Thai boxing scene.
The first of those was 22 year old hopeful Arnon Yupang (5-0, 2), who took a career best win by stopping veteran Inthanon Sithchamuang (31-14-1, 19) in the 4th round. On paper this was a big step up for Yupang, though the reality is that Inthanon was fighting well above his natural weight and looked much smaller than his younger, stronger foe. Yupang dropped Inthanon 3 times in round 4 to claim the victory, and the WBA Asia South Featherweight title.
Following Yupang's win we then saw the touted Phoobadin Yoohanngoh (9-0, 5) [แสงอาทิตย์ ลูกทรายกองดิน] claimed his most important win to date, out pointing Muay Thai fighter - turned boxer, Kulabdam Sor Jor Piekuthai (2-2, 1)[กุหลาบดำ สจ.เปี๊ยกอุทัย] over 10 rounds. This was a genuinely good, solid fight that saw both men have their moments.
Early on Phoobadin looked really smart and controlling the tempo and range of the fight well with his footwork, movement, and counter punching. Although he never seemed to badly hurt Kulabdam he did land the cleaner punches and found a home for his straight right hand. In the middle rounds however Kulabdam began to close the distance and upped his work rate, took more risks and forced a fight with the youngster. The pace suddenly got more exciting, but Kulabdam struggled to build on the success and keep the tempo up as both men began to tire.
At the end of 10 rounds it seemed close, but a fair win for Phoobadin who got the decision and became the new WBA Asia Light Welterweight champion.
Sadly at the time of writing scores haven't been made available.
Although the bout wasn't an all out war it as a very entertaining contest and a very good win for the teenager who is legitimately becoming a very, very good boxer. He's intelligent beyond his years, surprisingly strong, and quickly developing into one of the hottest young talents in Thailand. At the moment we wouldn't push him beyond this level too quickly, he needs more seasoning and time, but he is a very, very promising youngster and one to keep a very serious eye on.
Earlier today in Thailand fight fans had a couple of notable bouts to tune into on a Galaxy Promotion card. They weren't big bouts, but they were certainly notable contests.
The lesser of the two bouts saw novice professional Theeraphan Polsongkarm (2-0, 1) impressively defeating former world title challenger Inthanon Sithchamuang (31-13-1, 19) in a bout for the WBA Asia South Bantamweight title. This was a massive step up in class for Theeraphan, who debuted in March against Suor Carryboy, that didn't seem to phase the youngster who let Inthanon come to him and countered brilliantly early on.
As the bout went on Theeraphan began to turn the tables more, coming forward more and backing up the veteran and then sending him down to the canvas in round 7 following a brutal combination. Inthanon was concious but was a beaten man, and took the 10 count.
It should be noted that Theeraphan was listed on Thai TV as being 11-0 (8) entering the bout, and was referred to as Oscar Master Toddy Gym.
The other notable bout on this card saw former "world" title challenger Teerachai Kratingdaenggym (42-1, 31) [ถิรชัย กระทิงแดงยิม], aka Tewa Kiram, easily retain his WBA Asia Light Middleweight title against Filipino foe Junjesie Ibgos (13-5, 11).
The Thai looked the boss through out and sent Ibgos down with a left hook to the body mid way through 2. Ibgos got back to his feet but was sent down a second time, taking the full count on this occasion.
The hope in Thailand is for Teerachai to land a big fight in the near future, but this really won't have prepared him for anyone of note, sadly.
This coming Saturday is a truly hectic day for fight fans in Asia, with notable cards in Japan, Philippines and Thailand.
The headline bout from Thailand will see former "world" title challenger Teerachai Kratingdaenggym (41-1, 30) [ถิรชัย กระทิงแดงยิม], aka Tewa Kiram, defending his WBA Asia Light Middleweight title against Filipino foe Junjesie Ibgos (13-4, 11).
Earlier today the two men took part in their weigh in and both men made weight for the contest.
On the scales Teerachai was 154lbs whilst Ibgos was slightly lighter, scaling 152lbs.
The chief support bout for this card will see Theeraphan Polsongkarm (1-0) take on former world title challenger Inthanon Sithchamuang (31-12-1, 19). These two also made weight for their contest, which will take place at Bantamweight.
For fans wanting to watch this card it will be televised on Thai channel 31 from 15:15 local time.
(Image courtesy of Thairec.com)
Mukai stops Inthanon...again!
Last November we saw Japanese fighter Hirofumi Mukai (15-5-3, 5) [向井 寛史] claim the WBO Asia Pacific Super Flyweight title, with a second round win against former world title challenger Inthanon Sithchamuang (31-10-1, 19) [อินทนนท์ ศิษย์ชะมวง].
Today the two men had a rematch, and were again fighting for the WBO Asia Pacific crown.
Sadly for the Thai visitor his effort today was evn worse than in their first bout, and he failed to even last a round today against Mukai.
The Japanese fighter started fast and dropped Inthanon within seconds. The Thai got up and looked to continue but he looked sluggish and was unable to keep Mukai away, with the Japanese fighter dropping the Thai again. This time was the end with the bout lasting a total of 93 seconds!
With the loss it's hard to see what Inthanon still has to offer the sport, and although he's a former world title challenger his career looks to be about done. For Mukai the win keeps him relevant but it does seem like he will have a target on his back for a rising contender at 115lbs, and could well lose the title in his first defense, as he did in his last reign.
(Image courtesy of boxmob.jp)
Earlier today the Muto gym announced their next big card, which will take place on December 3rd at the EDION Arena Osaka, and feature 4 title bouts, includng a title unification bout.
One of those bouts will see Masahiro Sakamoto (10-1, 6) [坂本 真宏] attempt to claim the WBO Asia Pacific Flyweight title, in his second shot at the belt, as he takes on former world champion Kwanthai Sithmorseng (50-4-1, 27) [ขวัญไทย ศิษย์หมอเส็ง]. For Sakamoto this will be his second title fight, having lost a bout for this very title last November against current WBO world chamoion Sho Kimura. Interestingly Kwanthai was preparing to face Sakamoto earlier this year for the WBO Asia Pacific title, before Kimura got the call to fight the then WBO world champion Zou Shiming.
Another of the bouts will see Hirofumi Mukai (14-5-3, 4) [向井 寛史] battle against Inthanon Sithchamuang (31-9-1, 19) [อินทนนท์ ศิษย์ชะมวง] for the WBO Asia Pacific title, which has previously been held by Mukai. The bout, between former world title challengers, is really a must win for both fighters with neither really able to take another loss if they are to remain relevant. For Mukai the bout will be his second since being stopped by Rex Tso earlier this year whilst Inthanon will be seeking to avenge his 2016 loss to Mukai, who stopped him last year. Tha Thai is 0-2 in Japan and will be hoping to make it third time lucky in the Land of the Rising Sun.
In another bout we'll see Mark John Yap (27-12, 13) defend his OPBF Bantamweight title on against Japan's Seizo Kono (19-8-1, 12) [高野誠三], in what will be Yap's second defense of the title and comes on the back of his incredible cone-back against Kentaro Masuda. For Kono the bout will be his his second title, with his only other one being a battle with Rey Vargas for the WBC Youth Intercontinental Super Bantamweight title back in 2013. The bout should be a really interesting one, and much better than the records of the two men suggest. A win for Yap would almost certainly improve his world rankings and help him get a long pursued world title fight, though he will likely need another win or two given the depth at Bantamweight right now.
The final bout, and technically the main event of the show, will see the heavy handed Koki Tyson (13-2-2, 11) [太尊 康輝] take on Yasuyuki Akiyama (11-7-1, 8) [秋山 泰幸] in a bout which not only be for Tyson's OPBF Middleweight title, but also the vacant WBO Asia Pacific title, with the winner unifying the two titles. For Tyson this bout will be his second defense whilst Akiyama will be getting his will be getting his second title fight, after having challenged Akio Shibata for the Japanese and OPBF titles back in 2015. The winner here may find themselves sneaking into WBO world rankings, and potentially beginning moving towards a world title fight.
Whilst it's yet to be confirmed it's expected that we'll be able to see this card on boxingraise, with many other Mutoh shows also on the service. Hopefully this will be confirmed either later ths month or in November and then we'll get the chance to see all 4 title bouts.
(Image at the top courtesy iof boxmob.jp)
News! We try and give you the most interesting news stories from the Asian boxing world!