We've all heard of Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon, and we've decided to put our spin on things with "Six degrees of separation" looking to connect Asian fighters you may never have assumed were connected! Today we connect former 2-weight world champion Lakva Sim to one time contender Kanat Islam.
Just as ground rules, we're not doing the more basic "A beat B who beat C who beat D" type of thing, but instead we want to link fighters in different ways. As a result we will limit A fought B connections, and try to get more varied connections together, as you'll see here! We also know there are often shorter routes to connect fighters, but that's not always the most interesting way to connect them.
1-In 1994 Lakva Sim was one of 7 Mongolian boxers at the Asian Games, which was held in Hiroshima between October 4th and 13th. Despite going on to become a 2-weight world champion Sim didn't fair well in at the 1994 Asian Games, where he lost in his first bout to Venkatesan Devarajan, who took a 20-11 decision over the future Mongolian great.
2-Although rarely spoken about in international boxing circles over the last 20 years or so Venkatesan Devarajan was a genuine legend of Indian boxing. In fact he was one of the first Indian boxers to really make a mark on the sport, winning a medal at the world boxing cup and competing at the 1992 Summer Olympics. With a little bit of luck he would have been the first major Indian professional fighter, but he lacked that luck, and failed to get the funding he needed to make a mark on the professional ranks. Despite failing to turn professional he did win the Arjuna award in 1995, an award that was also won 21 years later by Vijender Singh.
3-During a long amateur career Vijender Singh competed at 3 different Olympics. The 2004, 2008 and 2012 games. He also managed to win medals at 3 Commonwealth games, the 2006, 2010 and 2014 games. His first medal at a Commonwealth Games was a silver in 2006. Interestingly just a division higher Canadian fighter Adonis Stevenson also took home a silver medal.
4-As a professional fighter Adonis Stevenson made his name as one of the best Light Heavyweights of his era and held the WBC title from 2013 to 2018. He made his debut on September 30th 2006. That same day fans in Argentina had the chance to see Luis Alberto Lazarte fight in his 40th professional bout, beating Reginaldo Martins Carvalho in 3 rounds.
5-During his career Luis Alberto Lazarte was quite possibly the dirtiest player in the game, and he was disqualified a ridiculous 5 times, including a rare No Contest due to a double DQ. Another super rare double DQ bout was the professional debut of Yamaguchi Falcao, with Falcao and Martin Fidel Rios both being disqualified in their January 2014 bout.
6-In April 2006, whilst he was still an amateur, Yamaguchi Falcao was stopped by a then 21 year old Hanati Silamu, competing for China, at the Cuban Olympiad. Hanati Silamu would later become better known as Kanat Islam!
We've all heard of Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon, and we've decided to put our spin on things with "Six degrees of separation" looking to connect Asian fighters you may never have assumed were connected! Today we connect former Japanese world champion Akinobu Hiranaka to former Mongolian 2-weight world champion Lakva Sim.
1-The heavy handed Akinobu Hiranaka made his professional debut on March 24th 1985 at the Konan High School in Naha. Hiranaka successfully debuted with an opening round KO win over Kazumi Yokoi. On the very same show Yasuo Yogi also made his debut, and like Hiranaka he scored a KO1 win, as he stopped Mituso Nakamura.
2-The talented Yasuo Yogi is best known for his Japanese Minimumweight title win in February 1988, when he beat Norikazu Kawana in a fire-fight that saw both men hitting the canvas, multiple times, in a thrilling second round. Sadly though Yogi's reign was a short one and he lost in his first defense, to Missile Kudo just 4 months later. Later in his career Yogi would go on to lose to a number of international fighters, including Kwang Sun Kim.
3-Sadly the talented Kwang Sun Kim had a super short career, going 6-2 (4) in his professional career. Despite failing to make a major mark on the professional ranks, losing in two world title fights, he had been an excellent amateur and had won a Gold medal in the 1988 Olympics in Seoul. On route to that gold medal he beat American fighter Arthur Johnson.
4-The talented Arthur Johnson, much like Kwang Sun Kim, was a very good amateur who didn't have the success in the professional ranks that many had expected from him. That was despite getting 4 world title fights. The first of those world title fights came in 1994 when he challenged the then IBF Flyweight champion Pichit Sithbanprachan, over in Thailand, with Pichit taking a decision over Johnson.
5-Although Pichit Sithbanprachan retired several times during his career, his very final bout came in 2000, when he beat Oscar Vargas. On the very same card Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai scored a 6th round KO win over Jose Luis Tula, to retain the PABA Super Featherweight title.
6-The exciting Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai is best known for his reign as the WBA Super Featherweight champion. It was a short reign, lasting just over 3 years but was an interesting one, with wins over Lamong Pearson, Ryuhei Sugita and Steve Forbes. For those wondering he won the title in 2002 when he over-came Mongolian warrior Lakva Sim!
Thinking Out East
With this site being pretty successful so far we've decided to open up about our own views and start what could be considered effectively an editorial style opinion column dubbed "Thinking Out East" (T.O.E).