Earlier today fight fans in Thailand saw WBC Super Flyweight champion Srisaket Sor Rungvisai (46-4-1, 41) [ศรีสะเกษ นครหลวงโปรโมชั่น] fight on Thai soil for the first time in well over a year, as he took part in a 10 round tune up bout against Korean veteran Young Gil Bae (28-7-2, 22) [배영길]. Unsurprisingly however the bout was more a showcase for the champion rather than an actual competitive contest.
From the very opening moment Srisaket forced his will on the Thai who looked older, smaller, weaker and a little worried. It wasn't long until Srisaket found the range for his devastating left hand and after just 2 mins 50 seconds Bae was down in the corner, watching the referee wave off the bout. He had seen enough, and knew that the longer he let this continue the more possible harm could be inflicted to the massively over-matched visitor.
After the bout the Thai MC confirmed that we would see Srisaket again on on a ONE Championship show in October, but the opponent for that bout is still to be announced, though Iran Diaz (14-2-3, 6) has been linked to the bout in recent weeks, in what would be another underwhelming match up for the Thai champion.
For fans who missed this bout it's expected to be uploaded to the Workpoint Youtube channel, and was streamed worldwide through the Workpoint website.
Last week we reported that WBC Super Flyweight champion Srisaket Sor Rungvisai (45-4-1, 40) [ศรีสะเกษ นครหลวงโปรโมชั่น] was set to return to the ring for the first time since his win over Juan Francisco Estrada earlier this year. That win was followed by Srisaket breaking up with his long term partner and putting plans on ice to return to the US, for now.
Today we saw the official announcement of Srisaket's return, which we now know will take place on July 21st and will see the Thai battle against Korean foe Young Gil Bae (28-6-2, 22) [배영길], in what will be a 10 round non-title bout.
The bout will be shown on Workpoint TV, continuing the relationship between the channel and the Nakornluang stable, and as a result will be available to watch free, world wide, through the Workpoint youtube channel.
The bout serves as Srisaket's first in Thailand since December 2016. Since then he has had 3 fights in the US, scoring massive wins over Estrada and Roman Gonzalez, twice, to put himself in the global boxing limelight and become a 2-time WBC world champion.
Bae has also been out of the ring for a while, having not fought since April 2017, when he fought to a draw with a Thai novice in Bangkok. He has frequently fought in Thailand, and is mostly known for his 2015 stoppage loss to WBC Minimumweight champion Wanheng Menayothin, who moved to 40-0 by stopping Bae. The Korean has sadly lost to every notable fighter he has faced, and was demolished in 4 rounds last time he faced a name fighter, with Rex Tso doing a number on him in Hong Kong. It's hard to imagine him lasting long against Srisaket here, given that the Thai will have a lot of frustrations to take out when he gets back in the ring.
At the moment there is no information in regards to the under-card, but with the bout being Srisaket's long awaited return to a Thai ring we don't think many will be tuning in for a stacked under-card. Instead the bout looks to be a tune up bout and a chance to shine in front of the local Thai fans, who haven't been able to see their star fighter in action since he became such a big name in the sport.
The KBA are one of the many Korean organisations sanctioning shows and although they are much less high profile than some of the others they do, occassionally, put on a show with some notable names. Their next one will take place on February 26th in Gimhae City.
One of those notable names is former WBC Minimumweight title challenger Young Gil Bae (27-5-1, 21) [배영길], who will be looking to claim the WBC Asian Boxing Council Flyweight title. The Korean puncher will be up against Thai foe Chatchai Or Benjamas (7-8, 6), a 25 year old Thai who recently claimed the Thai Super Bantamweight title. Although Chatchai has lost more than he has won he did begin his career with 6 straight losses, including defeats to Jonathan Taconing and Yohei Tobe among others, and has since gone 7-2.
For Bae the bout will be his first bout since last year's loss to Rex Tso in Hong Kong, and will see him fight in Korea for the first in more than 2 years.
The other notable name is Bae's wife Hee Jung Yuh (17-2, 8), who fought in a female world title bout against Naoko Fujioka last year. Yuh will be facing off with Nongkiat Saithonggym (1-1) WBC Asian Boxing Council female Super Flyweight title. For the Thai this will be her second title fight, following a WBC Youth title fight against Yuko Kuroki back in 2011, whilst Yuh will be looking to make the first defense of the title she won back in 2015.
Yesterday fans in Hong Kong had the chance to see local star Rex Tso (19-0, 12) [曹星如] continue his perfect winning run as he scored a stoppage win against former world title challenger Young Gil Bae (27-5-1, 21) [배영길].
The exciting "Wonder Kid" looked too big and too youthful from the opening stages and despite a patient start from the Hong Kong star the bout never looked in any real doubt, with Tso slowly walking down the Korean.
Tso began to break down Bae during round 2 and 3 and as Tso began to up the pace Bae became more desperate, throwing wilder shots. That proved to be a mistake with Tso landing counters and forcing Bae to take a count in round 3.
In round 4 Tso continued to press the action and seemed to land shots at will. Those shots backed Bae on to the ropes where Tso unloaded and eventually forced the referee to wave off the bout saving Bae from further punishment in a bout that had been exciting, but one sided.
With the win Tso has unified the previously vacant WBO Asia Pacific Super Flyweight title with the WBC Asian Boxing Council Super Flyweight title, which Tso defended for the first time.
(Image courtesy of Sumio Yamada)
Late last week the South China Morning Post (SCMP) reported that Japan's promising Ryota Murata (9-0, 6) [村田 諒太] had been added to the upcoming DEF Promotions/Top Rank show set to take place on May 14th in Hong Kong.
According to the the Chinese paper Murata will be facing once beaten Brazilian puncher Felipe Santos Pedroso (13-1, 11), who is riding a 7 fight T/KO run, a run that has followed his sole defeat back in December 2013.
The bout will act as the chief support for Rex Tso's (18-0, 11) [曹星如] contest against former world champion Young Gil Bae (27-5-1, 21) [배영길],
Notably this is a big change in Murata's original plans, which were to take part in a bout in the US during May, though it does seem much like this card has been based on changes to plans with Tso himself have originally planned to fight for a world title, rather than to face the Korean foe.
Interestingly nothing about this bout has yet been mentioned in the Japanese media, nor have Teiken or Murata himself publicly acknowledged the bout. We're are however expecting that to change in the coming days.
News! We try and give you the most interesting news stories from the Asian boxing world!