Earlier today we had the latest in the WP Boxing Series, which was made available world wide. It was streamed via Work Point and Matchroom Sport and made available in Latin America as part of the ESPN Knockouts series of broadcasts.
In the opening bout of the show talented prospect Chainoi Worawut (11-0-1, 10) made light work of under-sized Filipino fighter Jomar Fajardo (17-16-2, 9). The opening round saw Chainoi stalking and pressuring Fajardo with little coming back, and in round 2 the Thai put his foot on the gas and landed a power straight that dropped the Filipino. Fajardo got to his feet before the 10 count but the decision was made to stop the bout, with his corner stepping in rather than leave him in there to take more punishment.
Thankfully it appears this was little more than a tune up for Chainoi who is expected back in the ring in September to defend his minor titles on another WP Boxing event,
We then got the main event, which saw former world champions colliding in one of the most significant bouts in recent Thai boxing history. The match up saw Srisaket Sor Rungvisai (48-5-1, 41) [ศรีสะเกษ นครหลวงโปรโมชั่น] needing to work incredibly hard to defeat 40 year old veteran Amnat Ruenroeng (20-4, 6) [อำนาจ รื่นเริง].
Coming in Srisaket, a former 2-time WBC Super Flyweight champion, was 1/9 favourite but those odds didn't reflect the early action. Instead of Srisaket dominating he was made to look slow, and off. His timing wasn't there and his pressure was countered well by Amnat, who landed frequently with his superior hand speed and ring IQ shining through. Although Srisaket had been out of the ring for well over a year he was still looking a lot worse than anyone had expected.
Amnat, a former IBF Flyweight champion, looked really good in the first few rounds, and really didn't look like he was 40, heading towards 41. He also got a boost when a clash of heads in round 3 left Srisaket with a nasty cut around his left eye.
Sadly for Amnat however as the bout went on he began to look his age, and from round 7 he really wasn't able to get much success, with Srisaket's pressure really paying off. Srisaket had landed body shots through out, but in reality it was the relentless effort from the 33 year old, that took it's toll on the older legs of Amnat who looked like he was fighting on fumes in the later stages. Despite that he managed to hear the final bell, something very expected before hand,
Given the good start by Amnat and the very strong finish from Srisaket it was clear this was a very competitive contest and the scores cards mostly showed that, with the reading out the cards as 97-94, 96-93 and 99-91, all in favour of Srisaket.
Although it's a win for Srisaket the performance wasn't great. Some will write it off as ring rust, and the stop-start nature of this bout which was rescheduled several times. In reality it's a third straight bout where he's not looked like the man he once was and with his 34th birthday later this year we do if, perhaps, it's a sign that he's actually a fighter who's very much on the downside of his long, and successful career.
As for Amnat, we wouldn't be surprised to see a regional prospect actively chasing a bout with him, to try and get his name on their record. As long as the bout is over 10 or 12 rounds they'll get a very good test out of him and have an excellent chance of getting a former world champion on their record.
In the third bout on the broadcast the talented Thananchai Charunphak (9-1, 7) faced off with novice Kwanchai Pliankhunthod (0-2). Despite his lack of experienced Kwanchai made an effort of things earlier on, but in round 3 he began to take a battering at the hands of Thananchai. Despite the punishment Kwanchai took he managed to grit it out until a body shot took broke his resistance in round 5 and a follow up barrage sent him down for the count.
Tomorrow we see the attention of the boxing world turn to Thailand for one of the most notable all-Thai fights in recent memory, as former world champions Srisaket Sor Rungvisai (47-5-1, 41) [ศรีสะเกษ นครหลวงโปรโมชั่น] and Amnat Ruenroeng (20-3, 6) [อำนาจ รื่นเริง] face off in the Work Point Studio in Bang Phun.
Despite the bout being a much anticipated one, so much so that it will be shown in Latin America as part of the ESPN Knock0ut series and in the UK, by Matchroom Sport, the actual contest is seen as a bit of a mismatch.
The UK have Srisaket priced as a 1/12 favourite to win the contest and move towards another world title bout. The 2-time WBC Super Flyweight champion has made it clear he's wanting to become a 3-time world champion and this bout should help him shake some ring rust ahead of another big fight in the near future.
Amnat, who turns 41 in December, is a huge 9/1 to score the upset and revive his career. The veteran has struggled since losing the IBF Flyweight title to John Riel Casimero in 2016 and has lost 2 of his last 4 pro bouts, as well as losing in a kick boxing bout to Teshin Nasukawa and an amateur boxing bout, at the 2016 Olympics.
The draw is available at 28/1, though is more widely available at 22/1.
Not only is Srisaket expected to win but he's actually expected to stop the Thai, with odds of 2/5 for Srisaket to score the stoppage and end the bout inside the distance. The former Super Flyweight champion is 5/2 to take a decision. As for Amnat backers he's 14/1 to take a decision and a huge 22/1 to score a stoppage.
Given the odds on a stoppage it's worth noting the bout is 1/3 to not go the distance and 2/1 to go to the final bell.
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.
Tomorrow in Thailand fans will be able to see Phoobadin Yoohanngoh (8-0, 4) and Kulabdam Sor Jor Piekuthai (2-1, 1) clash for the WBA Asia Light Welterweight, with the bout being aired on Thairath.
Today, ahead of their bout, the two men took part in their weigh in and both men made weight.
The bout is seen as a really intriguing match up for Thai boxing. Phoobadin is just 16 years old, but there is a growing buzz around him, and he has received a lot of attention in recent weeks for not only his age but also the tough background that he's from. Kulabdam on the other hand was a good Muay Thai fighter who has turned his hand to boxing. Although Kulabdam has suffered an early loss as a professional he is a very experienced fighter and will be looking at this bout as a chance to put his name on the boxing map.
For fans wanting to watch this it will be aired live on Thairath from 16:10 local time in Thailand.
(Image courtesy of TL Boxing Promotion)
Over the last 2 days Work Point have confirmed the dates of their next 2 cards, which will come on back to back Saturdays live from their studios on Bang Phun!
The first of those cards will come on July 25th and will be headlined by a WBC Asia Bantamweight title bout between former world title challenger Nawaphon Kaikanha (48-1-1, 38) and Suradech Ruhasiri (6-2, 5). Whilst this is the main event it looks like a massive mismatch, with Suradech coming in to the bout on the back of successive losses, including a stoppage loss last time out to Daiki Funayama in Japan.
On paper the main event is a mismatch, though we do quite like the main supporting bout, which will see Phongsaphon Panyakum (8-1, 3) take on Sophon Klachun (5-4-1, 1). On paper this doesn't look competitive, but Sophon did impress us when he pushed Dynamic Kenji all the way in 2019 and he is better than his record suggests. He's also the naturally bigger man, with Phongsaphon scoring wins against naturally smaller men than Sophon.
The second card will come on August 1st and will be headlined by the re-scheduled showdown between former 2-time WBC Super Flyweight champion Srisaket Sor Rungvisai (47-5-1, 41) [ศรีสะเกษ นครหลวงโปรโมชั่น] and former IBF Flyweight champion Amnat Ruenroeng (20-3, 6) [อำนาจ รื่นเริง]. This is a bout that was supposed to take place much, much earlier in the year, but has been re-arranged several times due to the global situation.
At the time of writing this is the only bout confirmed for the August card, though more bouts are expected to be announced later this month.
Although not confirmed, we expect to see both cards on DAZN in the US, as other WP Boxing events have been in the past.
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