Kunlun Fight made headlines earlier this year by signing up both Buakaw Banchamek and Yodsaenklai Fairtex. The internet was abuzz with talk that the two might finally meet and while that matchup didn’t transpire the Chinese organization has booked a fascinating Thai vs Thai fight.
Yodsaenklai is set to take on Sittichai Sitsongpeenong in the quarter finals of the Kunlun Fight 70 kgs Grand Prix. It’s a matchup which pits two of the top Thai fighters on the international scene together and pride will be at stake when the two countrymen go head to head on December 19th.
The card is set for Henan, China and will feature all four tournament quarter finals. Kong Lingfeng from China is facing Australia’s Victor Nagbe, Zhang Chunyu from China is going up against Thai fighter Superbon Banchamek and Georgia’s Davit Kiria takes on Russian Enriko Gogokhia.
However all eyes will be on the all Thai contest which pits two of the biggest names in the 70 kgs division together. Yodsaenklai won the original series of The Contender Muay Thai and hasn’t lost a fight since 2007, winning titles with both Thai Fight and Lion Fight in recent years.
Both fighters are former Lumpinee Stadium 147 lbs champions although Sittichai is coming of a controversial defeat at Glory 25. Most people had him winning very round of his 70 kgs title fight with Robin van Roosmalen but the judges disagreed and awarded the win to the Dutchman.
Yodsaenklai has been fighting internationally since 2005 but Sittichai made the transition from being a star at the Bangkok stadiums to breaking out onto the global scene more recently. He’s won tournaments with Thai Fight and Glory but is likely to be at a significant size disadvantage against an opponent who has competed at higher weights.
In 2012 Yodsaenklai knocked out Sittichai’s former team mate Kem Sitsongpeenong. While the two don’t train together anymore December 19th will be an opportunity for the camp to exact some vengeance and break the veteran’s 21 fight winning streak.
Check out these related stories:
The Mixed Martial Arts of Victorian London
Before BJJ, there was Bartitsu.
Jonathan Maicelo: The Last Inca
Peru's up-and-coming boxing star.
Kron Gracie on Jiu-Jitsu, Skateboarding, Older Brothers, and Famous Fathers
The ties that bind are strong.
Joel Tudor on the Art of Surfing, Fighting, and Style
A surf icon helps MMA keep its sense of tradition.
Japan's Karate Kid: Kyoji Horiguchi
Japan's brightest MMA prospect.