Sea Games medallists Khim Dima and Chhoeung Lvei both claimed knock-out wins against their foreign opponents in Saturday night’s matches.
Kun Khmer International Federation (KKIF) belt holder Sok Thy survived a knock down, but was ultimately defeated on points by a Thai boxer, while Kung Sambo was disappointed by his own point loss to an Iranian.
At the Krud Kun Khmer event, held in Kratie province, Dima, going into his 60kg match with Thailand’s Slatan Chibmerngnun, was widely considered an underdog against the strong Thai fighter.
Dima was also recovering from an injury, and was rumoured to be at less than full fitness.
Nonetheless, a perfect elbow strikes – in just the second minute of the first round – saw the Thai man knocked unconscious.
“I have claimed victory over the Thai boxer. I thank the residents of Kratie province, and all of my fans,” said an elated Dina via social media, immediately after the match.
At the same event, Sambo was let down by a points loss to Iranian boxer Mohammad.
“The Iranian boxer was bigger than me, but his technique was nothing special. My legs were just exhausted after the first round. If my energy levels were higher, I guarantee I would have knocked him out before the end of the third round,” he said.
“I did not get the result I wanted, so I would love the chance to meet him again,” he added.
The Cambodia Kun Khmer KKIF promotion, held on the same night in Siem Reap province, saw a similar mix of results.
Gold medallist Lvei scored a knockout win over Iran’s Hamidreza Mehrabloo, sending him to the canvas in the first minute of the second round.
Sok Thy had a promising start in his match against Thailand’s Kittidet Khamchumphon, but was knocked down by a lethal kick to the deck near the end of the second round. He stayed down for an eight count, but was saved by the bell.
Unfortunately, he was unable to find a way through the Thai’s defences, with the judges deciding Kittidet had done enough to claim the points win.
Friday night’s much-anticipated Kun Khmer Kung Fu event, which pitted five of Cambodia’s best fighters against Chinese opponents, saw the Kingdom’s fight fans celebrate a 4-1 score. All four male Cambodian fighters claimed wins at the event, held at Town Sports, on the outskirts of Phnom Penh.
Cambodian women’s champion Eh Yanut suffered a points loss to Chinese boxer Kuang Fei in their 57kg kickboxing bout. Yanet had never met an opponent under international kickboxing rules, and had been expected to struggle with the sports’ ban on the use of elbow strikes.
Two of the fights were fought under Kun Khmer rules, with Thoeun Theara scoring a first round knockout of Chinese fighter Chiao Zhou in their 72kg match. Phal Sophoan defeated Liu Longquan on points in their 65kg bout.
The remaining two kickboxing matches also went the way of the Cambodians, by points decision.
Pich Sambath beat Yang Huo in the 60kg weight class, while Moeun Mekhea defeated Zhang Jingtao in their 63.5kg match-up.