Thai champ wins lackluster Patong fight

PATONG: In the highly anticipated non-title fight between World Boxing Council flyweight champ Pongsaklek Wonjongkam and Randy Mangubat of the Philippines, the Thai champ improved his record to 55-2 in a rather lackluster win on points.

However, in the first bout between Asian Boxing Council (ABC) Flyweight Champion Denburapha TwinsSpecial and top-ranked challenger Ponomrunglek Kratingdaeng-gym, the crowd was treated to perhaps the wildest organized punch-up the island has ever seen, with the 20-year-old champ from Prachin Buri battering the challenger into submission in round six.

In a last-minute change, the fights were staged at Patong Boxing Stadium due to the rain and high winds at the beachside Nong Harn Public Recreation area in Karon, where the bouts were originally scheduled to take place. The entire card was broadcast live nationwide on Thai TV Channel 7.

The bouts were staged by Petchyindee Boxing in association with the WBC, which concludes its 42nd Annual Convention, dubbed “The Convention of Loyalty”, at the Hilton Arcadia Beach Resort today.

In the main event, the 29-year-old Philippino Randy Mangubat proved a difficult target for Pongsaklek. Mangubat seemed unfazed by the highly partisan crowd and humid conditions and used his compact frame to stay out of danger and slip in a number of crisp body shots to the champ’s midsection in the first half of the fight.

After round five, which saw Pongsaklek spin off wildly after missing a blow and Mangubat responding with some roundhouse attempts of his own, the two pugilists seemed to decide not to risk going for broke – this was, after all, a non-title fight.

Instead they put on a boxing exhibition for the crowd, which consisted of many ABC, WBC officials and top promoters from Japan, Korea and Thailand.

The remaining five rounds were rather lackluster and the fight seemed about even after the final bell. But there was no surprise – or complaint from the Filipino – when Pongsaklek’s arm was raised and he was declared the winner on points, although the individual judges’ tallies were not announced.

The real action on the three-fight card came in the first bout, which pitted defending ABC Flyweight Champ Denburapha TwinsSpecial of Prachin Buri against top-ranked challenger Panomrunglek Kratingdang-gym of Buri Ram.

In the first round, the champ went stumbling backwards after a blow by the Kratingdang Gym fighter, causing him to lose his balance and end up on the canvas for a mandatory 8-count.

In the second round, Panomrunglek used his height advantage to keep the champ at bay and land some more good shots. But in the 3rd round, Denburapha’s relentless pursuit and barrage of left hooks and straight jabs began to pay dividends, giving him the edge over his 20-year-old opponent, who fell into counterpunching mode.

In the fourth, Denburapha continued the relentless stalking of his opponent, wearing him down. In a frenzied 5th round, both fighters heads’ were snapped back several times by hard blows. The champ took two powerful uppercuts but continued his assault unfazed.

In the 6th round, Denburapha’s barrage of left hooks and straight jabs was just too much, sending Ponomrunglek to the canvas – more from exhaustion than from the champ’s finishing blows. He was counted out and had to be helped back to his corner.

Denburapha was presented with his championship belt by ABC President Pol Gen Kovid Bhakdibhum.

In the third bout, for the WBC Youth Championship, defending champ Oledon Kratingdang-gym used his height advantage and superior skills to outclass challenger Jay Herla of the Philippines.

Oledon stunned Herla with a left uppercut at the beginning of the fourth round and then continuing a frenzied assault that sent the Filipino to the canvas from a crouching position with two finishing left jabs.

Oledon won by TKO when Herla said he couldn’t continue.

Phuket News

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