Viewers in the UK are treated to an early morning ten-rounder from Thailand, as hometown hero, Srisaket Sor Rungvisai (47-5-1, KO41) makes a debut at Super-Bantamweight in his home country.
You can see him return on Matchroom and DAZN’s YouTube channels from 8:45am UK time.
The former two time WBC Super-Flyweight champion has an assignment against fellow countryman Amnat Ruenroeng (20-3, KO6), himself a former World champion at Flyweight, at the Workpoint Studio in Bang Phun.
33-year-old Srisaket first came to wider prominence in March 2017, but his career was nearly over before it had started. After turning professional in March 2009, going 1-3-1 in his first five fights, he was matched tough.
He then went 21 fights unbeaten, 20 coming by the short route, to set up a shot at the WBC Super-Flyweight title in May 2013.
The Thai travelled to Japan to dethrone Yota Sato in eight rounds. Sor Rungvisai would get comfortable with fighting at home though, and made just one defence of his belt in his next eight fights.
The step up came in Mexico in May 2014, where Srisaket lost his title on a technical decision to Carlos Cuadras, with the contest halted after eight rounds due to the Mexican being cut from a clash of heads.
Srisaket rebuilt in his homeland with 15 wins against woeful opposition, many who were on debuts, but he received another big break in March 2017.
Srisaket was most almost certainly the B-Side to Roman ‘Chocolatito’ Gonzalez in what should have been a showcase win for the Nicaraguan.
However, Srisaket didn’t read the script and produced one of the shocks of the year in an absolute thriller, winning a majority decision for a major upset.
Sor Rungvisai would prove it was no fluke just six months later in a rematch, as he coldly knocked out Gonzalez in four rounds to emerge as a lower weight one to watch.
Another impressive defence followed in outscoring Juan Franciso Estrada before he again returned to Thailand for two more wins, defending the famous green belt once while over there.
Srisaket hasn’t been seen though since April 2019, where his grip on the WBC title was ended in yet another classic with Estrada, with the Mexican turning the tables to take a decision win.
Rungvisai eases back in two weights north of Super-Flyweight against Amnat Ruenroeng, who also hasn’t campaigned at this weight in his 23 fight career.
Ruenroeng is now 40-years-old, with his best days behind him, and he has been a professional since 2012.
Becoming World champion in just his 12th paid contest, outscoring Rocky Fuentes for the vacant IBF Flyweight title in January 2014.
Defending the belt five times across three countries including Japan, Macao and his native Thailand, with some good wins Zou Shiming, McWilliams Arroyo and John Riel Casimero.
Ruenroeng would come unstuck in China in May 2016 in a rematch with Casimero, as the Filipino knocked him out in four rounds to become the new champion. Ruenroeng hasn’t ruled again or fought for the World title since, and has suffered two more defeats in his last five outings.
Wanfeng Ge soundly outpointed him in China in November 2017, and Nawaphon Kaikanha made it back to back reverses with a fifth round stoppage win five months later. He has won two straight six round decisions since his last loss, with his last coming in March last year against Brian Lobetania in Thailand.
Prediction: I think that Srisaket will have a lot more ambition left in him than his opponent, and that should see him safely come through against Ruenroeng. Amnat is the wrong side of 40, and will have to win here if he still harbours a shot at world honours.
Both have rust to shed, and after a few feeling out rounds, Srisaket should be able to get his man out of there between rounds five and seven, to catapult himself back into the world title mix.