When I profiled the 67 kg Isuzu Tournament, I mentioned that the January 15th bout between Kem Sitsongpeenong and Sudsakorn Sor Klinmee (going by 13 Coins Gym for the tournament) was one of the most anticipated matchups in the tournament. Well, Sudsakorn beat Kem on points and now footage from the match in Omnoi stadium in Bangkok is on Youtube, courtesy of maththaigal.
Kem has a previous win over Sudsakorn and, being favored in this match, gives up two lbs to Sudsakorn, who weighed in at 149, to even out the fight's odds. Kem wears red, Sudsakorn blue.
Kem looks sharp in this bout, but Sudsakorn looked ever so slightly sharper, and had a definite edge in strength. It showed in the third round in the clinch. After two fairly even starting rounds, Sudsakorn exectuted a well-timed dump, and a sweep to pull ahead. The first dump Sudsakorn pulls on Kem, he actually attempted their first fight. Kem stayed on his feet and ate a knee in the first fight, but this time he goes to the canvas. Kem looks to bully forward in the clinch with limited success as the third round closes.
The fourth sees more of the same and, sweeping Sudsakorn, Kem looks poised to take the round convincingly. That is, until Sudsakorn pops his elbow across Kem's jaw. Kem looks out and recovers somewhat slowly, but once back, dials in the aggression and lands some serious shots with his superior hand skills, backing up Sudsakorn all the while. Sudsakorn finds some refuge in the clinch, where he's looked stronger all fight, but Kem is obviously doing the stalking.
This continues into the fifth, with the difference being that Sudsakorn is even less willing to engage. He knows he's won and is content to sway out of range, countering when it suits him. Kem wants to press the fight, but can't seem to shake Sudsakorn's defense or his composure to force him to exchange, and Sudsakorn takes the decision.
Kem would have needed to do much more damage in the fifth to have taken the fight after being dropped. He did well in the fourth to come back tremendously, but catching Sudsakorn seemed to be too much for him in the last round.
Sudsakorn is set to face Giorgio Petrosyan on January 29th, two weeks after this bout. The match is under K-1 rules, which magnifies Petrosyan's biggest threat to him: punches. We saw it here, when Kem was able to catch him with many hard shots in the fourth, and in their first bout, where Kem finished him with flurries in the third. Sudsakorn has also been stopped by Fabio Pinca with punches. Petrosyan is a faster, larger, and more precise puncher than either of those two.
His tendency to punch in combinations of two and three could give Sudsakorn opportunity to pick off counters, but he will have to go in with sharp defense, especially in the clinch restricted K-1 ruleset.