One of the many stories that our Thai friend, Pal, sent us really piqued our interest.
That bout, according to Pal, is a WBC Bantamweight world title eliminator between former Super Flyweight world champion Suriyan Sor Rungvisai (44-6-1, 22) and heavy handed Kazakh hopeful Zhanat Zhakiyanov (25-1, 18). The two men, ranked #1 and #2 by the WBC, are said to be in negotiations for the bout with the winner becoming the WBC mandatory challenger, for the winner of the upcoming Shinsuke Yamanaka Vs Anselmo Moreno bout.
Zhakiyanov, who is currently the WBC #1 contender, is a well traveled fighter who has fought in his native Kazakhstan, Russia, Uzbekistan, Thailand, Switzerland, the UK, Belarus, Hong Kong, Australia and Bulgaria. Although not the most skilled he is a fighter with serious power and is currently on a 20 fight winning streak, with 16 of those wins coming by (T)KO, and 12 of those have come in successive fights
Although a successful fighter, having held various regional titles, the Kazakh hasn't yet faced a world class opponent probably being a 5th round KO against Karim Guerfi in April 2014. That was a KO of the Year contender and showed his power was real though he didn't look great last time out, as he struggled to stop Hector Guzman.
As for Suriyan, the WBC #2 ranked contender, this will be a chance for him to move towards getting a possible rematch with Yamanaka, who beat him last year. On paper Suriyan doesn't have the best of records but he is genuinely one of the division's top contenders and has held his own with much more proven fighters than Zhakiyanov.
During his 51 fight career Suriyan has suffered competitive losses to the likes of Pongsaklek Wonjongkam, Yota Sato and Yamanaka. By the same token he has scored notable wins against the likes of Tomas Rojas, Nobuo Nashiro, and a then novice Tepparith Kokietgym. In all those bouts Suriyan has shown his toughness, his resiliency and his will to win getting up from numerous knockdowns and fighting on following a mid-fight barf.
If the two men get it on, as seems likely, it will pit possibly the toughest Bantamweight against one of the heaviest handed with the winner to face either the heaviest puncher or the slipperiest fighter in the division as a "reward".
Sadly at the moment the talks are said to have not advanced very far with no date or venue set, though knowing two the two parties it would seem likely that they will try and make a deal sooner rather than later, especially given that both men do appear to want a big fight.
For fans who haven't seen either man in the ring we've included footage of both below.
(Images courtesy of boxrec.com)
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