What a tremendous fight.
Penek is the Lumpinee Stadium & Thailand featherweight champion, the man who toppled super-bantamweight king Sam-A, and Sportswriters of Thailand Fighter of the Year 2012. Sagetdao is a multi-time Lumpinee Stadium champion in his own right, with wins over Saenchai, Nong-O and Liam Harrison, and he was the Lumpinee lightweight titlist as recently as March 9th, until his sixth tussle (fifth in straight one-on-one competition with no other fighter competing in the bout) with Saenchai that saw him relieved of his gold.
Penek, fighting out of Singpatong Gym, already beat a stable-mate of Sagetdao’s on his local turf, Bangla Boxing Stadium (Phuket), when he soundly outclassed Sitisak Phetpayathai. The youngster has youth and speed on the older, bigger, stronger Sagetdao, though it remains to be seen if Sagetdao – who looks lacklustre in 2012 compared to last year, despite several Lumpinee wins and a decent victory on the recent WBC card that also featured Kem, Fabio Pinca and Jomthong – can actually land enough of those trademark big body kicks and knees to keep Penek at bay and score enough to take the card.
Personally, I see this fight as something of a changing of the guard type encounter. Sagetdao may well bully and overpower his slightly built opponent, but skill wise Penek is at the top of his game, and I can see him being the busier,
The fight will take place in Penek’s hometown of Phattalung, in the southern province of Thailand on the Malay peninsula. The last time Penek’s manager Num Noi invited me there, they were slaughtering the village cows for a massive feast – hopefully if Penek emerges triumphant, something similar can transpire this time around by way of celebration…
Twitter @ Daniel Fletcher