QUALITY:Local exponents gain by competing against them
THE Kuala Lumpur Muay Thai Association (KLMTA) will continue to invite more foreign fighters to compete in future editions of the highly popular Kuala Lumpur International Muay Thai Super Eight Challenge series.
The recent 57kg weight category event saw over 7,000 spectators pack the Titiwangsa Stadium over the two-day tournament, the highest number to date.
The final of the tournament, which was the second leg of the series this year, saw Ban Mero Kuda Merah go the full five rounds before knocking out Koh Samui-based Frenchman Mike Perancis for the 57kg title belt.
KLMTA honorary secretary Mohd Zaki Yamat said foreign fighters who have competed in the event have raised the level of competition as well as spectator experience at the tournament since it went international in the first leg in January this year.
"Mike Perancis gave a very good performance this time and earned the respect of both our local fighters and fans alike as he went the full five rounds in the final although he was injured going into the match," said Mohd Zaki.
"We are looking to get more foreign fighters to come and compete in future legs as we want to keep raising the standard of competition at the event.
"These fighters are very serious about competing and really fight with no fear whatsoever. Exposing our local boys to this kind of fighters is something that will help build their confidence.
"With them (foreign fighters) competing, it will also keep our local fighters on their toes as they can no longer expect an easy path to the final.
"The spectators, who come from all races, also enjoy supporting our local boys when they are up against foreign fighters as it is a chance to support their own country."
Ewan 'Big Boy' Omar also had to go the full five rounds against a foreign fighter, Russian Tochier Amir, to clinch the 91kg weight category title in the first leg this year.
Meanwhile, the highly anticipated 67kg title defence fight between Pokku Kuda Merah and Eddi Selendang Kuning saw Pokku successfully defending his title after the referee stopped the match when Eddi suffered a serious injury to his forehead in the third round.
The Kuala Lumpur International Muay Thai Super Eight Challenge series will continue with the third installation of the series in June, where the event will see fighters battle it out for the 54kg weight category title.
RESULTS (Malaysians unless stated) -- Super Eight 57kg Final: Ban Mero Kuda Merah bt Mike Perancis (Fra) -- KO 5th round.
International bout: Amir Kambiz Worrior Gym (Iran) v Wadi Sri Payung -- draw as no KO after five rounds.
Super Fight: Solihem Kuda Merah bt Tim Yong Tnt- KO 4th round ;
Faiz Singa Malaya v Pakcu Kuda Merah -- Draw as no KO after five rounds.
Title defence fight (67kg): Pokku Kuda Merah beat Eddi Selendang Kuning -- TKO 3rd round.