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Articles of 2006

Sirimongkol Singwancha, Fighter on a Mission



Diego Corrales and Jose Luis Castillo meet June 3rd for the WBC lightweight championship of the world – assuming Castillo can make weight. Castillo came in over the contracted weight in his last bout against Corrales and is scheduled to fight Miguel Cotto November 11th for the Jr. Welterweight title so the June 3rd bout ostensibly will be his last as a lightweight. Corrales, however, may stick around for awhile.

On May 20th in Los Angeles, California, the WBC #2 lightweight, Sirimongkol Singwancha faces an unknown quantity in WBC #3 lightweight, Chikashi Inada. The bout is for the interim championship and supposedly is to determine who will face the winner of the Castillo-Corrales bout. This is in principle of course, depending on if Castillo makes weight, who wins, who stays at lightweight or moves up and what the WBC decides after both fights have taken place.

In August of 2003, Sirimongkol made the first defense of his WBC Super Featherweight title against Jesus Chavez and was thoroughly outclassed, sending him back home to Bangkok to work his way back into title contention. The Sweet Science visited Sirimongkol at his father’s Singmanasak gym where he was in the midst of his afternoon workout. In the intense 100 degree plus heat, Sirimongkol jumped rope, sparred six, hard rounds, hit the heavy bag and worked the focus mitts at an absolutely blistering pace; round after round he visibly pushed toward exhaustion. It is clear he knows this may be his last run at the title; by all accounts he is in the best condition mentally and physically since his loss in 2003 to Jesus Chavez.

His fight against Inada takes place at the Staples Center, on the same card as Marco Antonio Barrerra-Rocky Juarez, Jorge Rodrigo Barrios-Janos Nagy and Rey “Boom-Boom” Bautista-Roberto Bonilla.

TSS: How did you get started in boxing and old were you?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: I was four or five when I first started learning to box. My father has owned a boxing gym for as long as I’ve been alive so I’ve been around boxing and Muay Thai all my life.

TSS: What was your amateur background?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: When I was a student I boxed and competed in school. Then I boxed on the Army team of Thailand. I was on the B-team (second team). I was very unhappy about not being good enough for the A-team and ran away from my Army life. I could have been in a lot of trouble but was fortunate to have a few people to help me get my life back on track.

TSS: Did you fight in Muay Thai before beginning to box?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: Yes, at our gym we train in boxing and Muay Thai so it was natural for me to train in Muay Thai.

TSS: What was your record and did you win any titles?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: I was the champion of Rangsit Stadium at 105 lbs. when I was 14 years old. My record was 52-13.

TSS:Did you idolize any fighters growing up?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: I really liked Marvin Hagler, especially after seeing him beat Tommy Hearns.

TSS: What about Thai fighters? Who do you think is the greatest Thai fighter of all-time?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: Samart Payakarun. He’s skilled in Muay Thai fighter and boxing. He’s been very generous to me and provided me with advice when I need it. He’s just a generous person.

TSS: Who is your favorite fighter?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: Oscar De La Hoya. I liked De La Hoya’s style before he moved up in weight, when he was younger. I also admire his speaking ability when speaking to the press and in big fight situations.

TSS: On May 20th you’re fighting Chikashi Inada, #3 in the WBC. What do you know about him and have you seen any footage of his fights?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: I met him in Texas when I fought Chavez. I didn’t see him fight though and haven’t seen any of his fights on video either.

TSS: What will your strategy be in the fight?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: No real strategy. Whatever he does, I’ll try to figure out the solution. My conditioning will be excellent and I’ll be able to handle anything he brings at me.

TSS: When do you arrive in the U.S. and where will you be training?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: I’m arriving on 16th or 17th and will only be running and shadowboxing for the last few days so I won’t be going to a gym to train.

TSS: In August 2003 you lost a unanimous decision to Jesus Chavez. Was this your toughest fight and what happened?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: Definitely the toughest both physically and mentally. A lot went wrong in that fight and I wasn’t all there mentally. I was very tense and my manager wanted me to use a different approach to fight Chavez which I wasn’t comfortable with. By the time of the fight, I was over trained, stressed and I didn’t fight my fight. By the time of the fight I had nothing left.

TSS: Where do you see yourself in the lightweight division? Do you think you’re the best in the division or do you think you have the potential to be the best?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: No, at this time, I don’t see myself as the best in the division. There are many good fighters in the lightweight division but Castillo or Corrales are the best (if Castillo can still make 135 lbs). If I’m focused and in shape, I can certainly give either of them a great fight.

TSS: Are there any fighters you’d like to fight other than Castillo or Corrales? Juan Diaz, Acelino Frietas, maybe a rematch against Chavez?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: Sure, I’d like a rematch against Chavez, a fight with Pacquiao or Barrera would be great though but I’ll fight anyone put in front of me.

TSS: Who do you think will win the Castillo-Corrales fight?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: Castillo will win – he’s the stronger of the two and I don’t think Corrales can beat him at this point.

TSS: Have you seen either of them fight? Have you seen their first two fights and what do you think about them as fighters?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: I’ve never seen either of them fight. All I know is they are very skilled fighters.

TSS: What will you do once you’re finished boxing?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: I’d like to teach Muay Thai and boxing – maybe in Japan or the US.

TSS: Do you think you’re one of the all-time great boxers in Thailand?

Sirimongkol Singwancha: I try to focus only on my next fight and don’t really think about it.

TSS: Good luck in your fight against Inada and in the future.

Sirimongkol Singwancha: Thank you.

Sirimongkol Singwancha

Born: March 2, 1977
Alias Sirimongkol Singmanasak
Birth Name Manop Iamtuom
Stance: Orthodox
Height: 5’8
Weight: 135
Reach: 72”
Pro Debut: May 18, 2004, WUD6 Ritichai Kiatprapas
Record: 53-2, 31 KOs
Manager: Naris Singwancha
Titles: WBU Super Flyweight 1995, WBU Bantamweight 1995-1996, WBC Bantamweight 1996-1997, WBC Super Featherweight 2002-2003

Articles of 2006

Peter/Toney Ii: Peter Has The Brutal Punch



Samuel Peter claims he has dynamites in my two hands?

Heavyweight contenders Samuel “The Nigerian Nightmare” Peter and James Lights Out? Toney get it on a second time this Saturday from the Seminole Hard Rock in Hollywood, Fla. (Showtime).

The hard-slugging Peter, unlike Toney, is one of those strong, silent types notorious for letting their fists to the talking one the opening bell sounds, but the Nigeria Nightmare is as confident as ever and determined to turn Lights Out’s lights out for good.

I have got dynamites in my two hands,? said Peter, according the Lagos, Nigeria Vanguard, and I will crush James Toney once and for all. The Toney camp made the mistake of their lives by protesting and seeking a rematch. I am ready to teach him a bitter lesson.?

Sam Peter walked away with the W for Peter/Toney I at the Staples Center in LA last September, but it was by disputed split decision a verdict so disputed, there was even a dispute about the dispute which forced the WBC’s hand into mandating Saturday’s rematch.

Samuel Peter is the biggest thing to hit African boxing since Ghanaian superstar Azumah Nelson rocked the feather and junior welterweight divisions. The President of the Nigeria Boxing Board of Control, Prince Olaide Adeboye, admitted, according to, We are rooting for Samuel Peter, of course. He is one boy we believe in to bring back the country’s lost glory in professional boxing. I am personally making arrangement to be at the ringside to see him fight Toney again. I was at the first fight in Los Angeles in September.

Peter has the brutal punch, and to me he was the clear winner of the first fight. But the WBC Board of Governors, of which I am a member, voted 21-10 for a rematch. There was nothing those of us Africans on the board could do in the circumstances. But I believe Peter will confirm he is better than Toney and will then go ahead to meet the champion and claim the belt for Nigeria and Africa.?

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Articles of 2006

The Sweet Science P4P Rankings for Asia



There are claims that boxing is dying. Hogwash. The heavyweight division isn’t the only division in boxing and 2007 promises to be a banner year in boxing; especially for boxers hailing from Asia.

While Asia isn’t Vegas or Atlantic City, it is a region packed of diamonds in the rough; undiscovered gems and potential superstars who wait for their moment in the sun.

The Sweet Science P4P Rankings – Asia

1) Manny Pacquiao – There’s no way to dispute Pacquiao is the best fighter in Asia, if not all of boxing. He’s exciting, he wins with Je Ne Sais Quois and is definitely “the man” in boxing.

2) Pongsaklek Wonjongkam – Although his competition leaves much to be desired, his longevity and skills are undeniable. He is currently Thailand’s only world champion and is undefeated in ten years. Need I say more?

3) Chris John – A victory over Juan Manuel Marquez, however controversial, shows he belongs at the top of the heap. He easily outpointed Renan Acosta to close out 2006 and should have no trouble defending against Jose Rojas in February. A fight with Pacquiao would not be a good move on his part but a rematch with Marquez would not hurt – especially if he defeats the Mexican again.

4) Hozumi Hasegawa – Hidden away in Japan, Hasegawa is a sharp punching southpaw who put former champion Veeraphol Sahaprom to sleep. He recently bested Genaro Garcia and his herky-jerky style will give fits to any one who steps in the ring with him.

5) Masomori Tokuyama – Tokuyama has never shied away from a good fight and although he only fought once in 2006 (UD12 Jose Navarro), he ledger shows wins over Katsushige Kawashima (twice), Gerry Penalosa (twice) and In Jin Chi (twice). A fight with Hozumi Hasegawa is a distinct possibility in 2007.

6) Nobuo Nashiro – With only seven fights under his belt he took on WBA champion Martin Castillo – and defeated him. Although he’s only fought a total of nine fights, nearly all have been against quality opposition. A victory in a rematch with Castillo would cement his claim as the king of the 115-pound division.

7) Yukata Niida – This light-hitting minimumweight defended his title twice in 2006, winning a technical decision against unbeaten Eriberto Gejon (Tech Win 10) and the other on points over Ronald Barrera (W 12). Scheduled to meet Katsunari Takayama early next year – the best has yet to come for this WBA belt holder.

8) In Jin Chi – Won back the title he lost to Takashi Koshimoto in January from Rudolfo Lopez. While there’s little uncertainty to his skills, at thirty-three, 2007 may provide some insight as to just how much he has left.

9) Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai –Sor Nonthachai is an exciting, top-shelf fighter with an iron chin. Has no trouble making mincemeat of mid-level opposition and deserves a title shot in 2007. Time is running out.

10) Rey Bautista – He’s young, relatively inexperienced in big-time boxing, but will continue to shine in 2007. One of the better prospects in boxing, he should snag a title in 2007.

Asian Fighters Ranked in Ring Magazine

Pound for Pound:

Manny Pacquiao (Philippines): #2

Jr. Lightweight

Manny Pacquiao (Philippines): #1
Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai: #9


Chris John (Indonesia) #1
In Jin Chi (Korea) #3
Takashi Koshimoto (Japan) #5
Hioyuki Enoki (Japan) #7

Jr. Featherweight

Somsak Sithchatchawal (Thailand) #4


Hozumi Hasegawa (Japan) #2
Veeraphol Sahaprom (Japan) #3
Ratanachai Sor Vorapin (Thailand) #6
Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym (Thailand) #10

Jr. Bantamweight

Nobuo Nashiro (Japan) #1
Katsushige Kawashima (Japan) #7
Pramuansak Phosuwan (Thailand) #10


Pongsaklek Wonjongkam (Thailand) #1
Takefumi Sakata (Japan) #7
Daisuke Naito (Japan) #10

Jr. Flyweight

Koki Kameda (Japan) #1


Yukata Naiida (Japan) #2
Eagle Kyowa (Japan/Thai) #4
Katsunari Takayama (Japan) #5
Rodel Mayol (Philippines) #7

Boxing in Thailand

There’s no shortage of boxers in Thailand. With a huge pool of Muay Thai fighters to draw from and several talented amateur boxing prospects turning pro after the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Thailand seems destined to remain a boxing powerhouse in Asia.

The country is known for having tough, determined and disciplined fighters who give their all whenever the step in to the ring. However, consistently losing while fighting abroad and padding their records with no-hopers has done nothing to enhance their reputation.

Whether because of a lack of marketability, a lack of funds or their unwillingness to travel abroad, the vast majority of boxers from Thailand remain a mystery to fans in the west. If anything though, the boxing scene involving Thai fighters will be active. In fact, it’s one of the most active in the world; since 2000, the number of fights has nearly doubled in the country.

The Sweet Science P4P Rankings – Thailand – August 2006

1) Pongsaklek Wonjongkam
2) Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym
3) Somsak Sithchatchawal
4) Wandee Singwancha
5) Sirimongkol Singwancha
6) Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai
7) Veeraphol Sahaprom
8) Pramuansak Phosuwan
9) Terdsak Jandaeng
10) Oleydong Sithamerchai

Current Sweet Science P4P Rankings – Thailand

1) Pongsaklek Wonjongkam (Flyweight) – Definitely the top dog in Thailand

2) Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai (Super Lightweight) – He’s a seasoned fighter who has proven himself in the big-time. He’s one Thai who can fight outside of Asia. He has an abundance of skills and one-punch power. His overall ability and ease in dispatching anyone other than championship caliber get him the runners-up spot.

3) Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym (Super Bantamweight) – After losing to Vladimir Sidorenko he’s bounced back. He’s young, he can punch, but the former interim champion needs to prove himself against a name fighter.

4) Somsak Sithchatchawal (Super Bantamweight) – Was his win over Monshipour a fluke or was Celestino Caballero just that good? Did Sithchatchawal catch Monshipour at the right time and can he rebound from the devastating loss? The jury is still out.

5) Wandee Singwancha (Flyweight) – He doesn’t have much of a punch which will be his downfall in the end. He can box, as was evidenced in his recent victory over Juanito Rubillar, but this won’t be enough. He can no longer make the Jr. Flyweight limit and with no punch he’ll have a hard time competing against the “big boys.” Although he’s now rated second by the WBC, he doesn’t deserve to be.

5) Sirimongkol Singwancha (Super Lightweight) – Get this guy a fight. He’s better than Jose Armando Santa Cruz and would have beat up Inada had the fight taken place. He’ll fight anyone but his biggest obstacle is staying motivated fighting tomato cans in Thailand. Like many Thais, he needs a fight against a name opponent.
6) Wandee Singwancha (Flyweight) – He doesn’t have much of a punch which will be his downfall in the end. He can box, as was evidenced in his recent victory over Juanito Rubillar, but this won’t be enough. He can no longer make the Jr. Flyweight limit and with no punch he’ll have a hard time competing against the “big boys.” Although he’s now rated second by the WBC, he doesn’t deserve to be.

7) Pramuansak Phosuwan (Super Flyweight) – A genuine tough guy. Always calm and focused no matter how heated the battle. But at thirty-eight, he’ll be in trouble should he fight one of the division’s elite.
8) Veeraphol Sahaprom (Bantamweight) – Will be lucky to get another crack at the title. Although he has a puncher’s chance of winning a belt, that’s about all he has left at this point. A third shot at Hasegawa is unlikely.

9) Oleydong Sithamerchai (Minimumweight) – He’s fought better than the usual opponents faced by Thais at his level and he moves up one spot with the departure of Terdsak Jandaeng. He lacks the punch and is in the wrong division to become a superstar. He’ll need to defeat a name opponent to convince me.

10) Saenghiran Lookbanyai / Napapol Kittisakchokchai (Super Bantamweight) – These two square-off in early March, supposedly to see who deserves a shot at Israel Vasquez. Kittisakchokchai has the edge in experience but some feel Lookbanyai has the edge in heart and is the favorite.

Neither has defeated a top twenty fighter and yet are ranked number one and two respectively in the WBC’s world.

In Kittisakchokchoi’s lone shot at the big-time, he was TKO’d in 10 by Oscar Larios. His dreadful performance against Larios and lack of quality opposition leads me to believe Saenghiran might have more of a shot at beating him than some suspect. Regardless, neither of them lasts longer than six rounds with Israel Vasquez.

Honorable Mention: Wethya Sakmuangklang, Denkaosan Kaovichit, Devid Lookmahanak, Nethra Sasiprapa, Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo, Pornsawan Kratingdaenggym

Thai Fighters Ranked in Ring Magazine

Pongsaklek Wonjongkam: #1 Flyweight
Pramuansak Phosuwan: #10 Jr. Bantamweight
Veeraphol Sahaprom: #3 Bantamweight
Ratanachai Sor Vorapin: #6 Bantamweight
Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym: #10 Bantamweight
Somsak Sithchatchawal: #3 Jr. Featherweight
Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai: #9 Lightweight

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Articles of 2006

Iceman Stops Tito Ortiz Win Streak



LAS VEGAS—UFC light heavyweight champion Chuck “Iceman” Liddell’s fists proved too much for Huntington Beach’s Tito Ortiz who was stopped in the third round before a sold out crowd at the MGM Garden Arena on Saturday.

The punching machine Liddell (20-3, 13 KOs) repeated his victory in UFC 66 over the much-improved grappler Ortiz who has improved his punching and blocking. Ortiz was trying to avenge his loss of April 2004.

Despite all the new weapons displayed by Ortiz it wasn’t enough as Liddell pummeled the former champion and retained his title with a technical knockout at 3:59 of the third round. Referee Mario Yamasaki stopped the bout.

“This was the most satisfying victory of my career,” said Liddell, 36, of Santa Barbara. “Tito came back real tough.”

Ortiz (15-5, 8 KOs), a former wrestler, worked on his boxing technique knowing he would need it against the former boxer Liddell. But Liddell’s experience allowed him to find the right moment to pounce on Ortiz.

“I had him hurt, I just kept throwing punches,” said Liddell who also knocked down Ortiz in the first round with a left hook.

Ortiz was gracious in defeat.

“Chuck is the best fighter Pound for Pound in the (mixed martial arts) world,” said Ortiz, 31, who suffered a gash on the side of his left eye from a punch. “I’m disgusted by myself. I let my fans down.”

Other bouts

Underdog Keith Jardine (12-3-1) knocked out Forrest Griffin (13-4) at 4:41 of the first round in their light heavyweight showdown. A right uppercut followed by a left hook wobbled Griffin who was sent to the floor by a barrage of punches. On the ground Jardine landed right after right until referee John McCarthy stopped the fight for a technical knockout.

“I couldn’t believe he was hurt,” said Jardine about Griffin who is known for his resiliency. “I was so nervous coming into this fight, but now I know I belong here.”

Canada’s Jason McDonald (18-7) choked out Chris Leben (15-3) in a middleweight bout that was up for grabs. Though Leben seemed to control the fight with stunning left hands, once the fight went to the ground McDonald managed a chokehold at 4:03 of the second round. Referee Steve Mazagatti saw Leben was unconscious and stopped the fight.

Former UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski (12-5) caught Brazil’s Mario Cruz (2-2) with a sneak right hand while both were tangled on the ground. Then the Belarusian pummeled Cruz until referee Herb Dean stopped the fight at 3:15 of the first round.

Third season winner of the Ultimate Fighter television reality season Michael Bisping (12-0) of Great Britain won by technical knockout over Eric Shafer (9-2-2) at 4:29 of the first round. A knee knocked Shafer groggy then Bisping knocked him to the ground and pounded him. Referee Mario Yamasaki stopped the bludgeoning.

Thiago Alves (16-4) caught Peru’s Tony De Souza (15-5) with a knee as he attempted to dive for his legs in a welterweight contest. After that it was pretty much over as Alves pummeled De Souza at 1:10 of the second round forcing referee John McCarthy to halt the bout.

Gabriel Gonzago (7-1) proved too strong for Carmelo Marrero (6-1) in a heavyweight bout. At 3:22 of the first round Gonzago of Massachusetts manipulated his way into arm bar forcing Pennsylvania’s Marrero to tap out.

Japan’s Yushin Okami (19-3) pounded Georgia’s Rory Singer (11-6) into submission at 4:03 of the third round of a middleweight bout. Okami seemed the more-rounded fighter with effective kicks to the head and more accurate punching.

Christian Wellisch (8-2) jumped to a quick start with an accurate left hook that rattled Australia’s Anthony Perosh (5-3) in a heavyweight bout. During the first round it seemed the Sacramento fighter might end the fight but the Aussie hung tough. Wellisch won by unanimous decision.

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