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 Thai world title challenger Prayurasak Muangsurin to former Chinese world champion Zou Shiming.
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 the 1980's Prayurasak Muangsurin was one of those fighters who knocked on the door of a world title several times. He never quite managed to get over the line but battled the likes of Ju Do Chun and Seung Hoon Lee in bouts for world titles and the likes of Elly Pical and Chul Ho Kim in non-title bouts.
2-The hard hitting Elly Pical, who actually stopped Prayurasak Muangsurin inside a round, was Indonesia's first world champion. Not only that but Pical actually won the IBF Super Flyweight title 3 times during his career. Another fighter who won that title was Daiki Kameda.
3-Daiki Kameda, the middle child from the Kameda family didn't have a long reign as the champion, and it actually ended in very controversial fashion that has lead to a protracted legal battle. Kameda had won the title from Rodrigo Guerrero to become a 2-weight champion, the second of those in the family after his brother Koki Kameda.
4-The enigmatic Koki Kameda fought out of several gyms during his career, beginning with the Green Tsuda gym. That was also the same gym as Kazuto Ioka began training at, following in the footsteps of his uncle. Whilst Ioka wouldn't be linked with the Green Tsuda gym for long, joining the Ioka Gym before turning professional, this gym still played a notable part in his development.
5-In 2014 Kazuto Ioka suffered his first professional loss, losing to Amnat Ruenroeng, a man that has also scored at least one notable amateur win over him, beating him in the semi-final of the 2008 King's Cup in Bangkok. The win over Ioka saw Amnat record a defense of the IBF Flyweigt title, and score his first professional win outside of Thailand.
6-Around 10 months after Amnat Ruenroeng had beaten Kazuto Ioka, in Japan, he travelled over to Macao and did the same to Zou Shiming, giving Shiming his first loss and retaining the IBF Flyweight title.
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).