Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Bheut Kam begins title chase



Bheut Kam begins title chase

Bheut Kam begins title chase


23-year-old Bheut Kam (blue shorts) is the bookies favourite to top group A of the Bayon TV light-middleweight tournament, which started Saturday.

All Photos by: Robert Starkweather

With small sheets of Christian scripture wrapped across his knuckles, Bheut Kam dropped Chan Ratana with a right-left in the fourth round on his way towards earning a victory decision on Saturday in the opening bout of the light-middleweight tournament underway at the Bayon TV boxing arena.

Just one fight short of 200 career bouts, Bheut Kam joins seven others who are battling for a title shot against defending light-middleweight champion Outh Phouthang.

A heavy underdog heading into the fight, Chan Ratana is widely known for his Bokator background. He often wows crowds with flashy spinning elbows and back kicks. But against a smiling Bheut Kam, who swept him to the canvas several times in every round, it was all Chan Ratana could do to stay on his feet.

Chan Ratana had his moments. He landed a hard right elbow in the first round, and he wobbled Bheut Kam with an overhand right in the third. But otherwise, Bhuet Kam, one of 10 siblings from a large Christian family, showed little trouble outmaneuvering The Bokator Kid.

Bheut Kam, who started fighting in 2004 at the age of 17, has previously owned five different titles in three weight divisions – one at 48, one at 57, and three at 60 kilograms.

He is the favorite in Group A, which includes Chan Ratana, Tuot Reachesay and Kao Lek.

Group B comprises Chey Kosal, Yok Yakill, Ven Sovan and Soy Phireak.

Bhut Kam and Chey Kosal are both widely expected to win their respective divisions, making the group stage mostly a battle for second place. The top two finishers from each group will advance to semifinals.

In yesterday’s group B match, a bloody Yok Yakill survived a second-round cut over his right eye to score a third-round knockdown on his way toward earning the victory decision over Soy Phireak.

Over the next five weeks, Group A fights will headline the Saturday card at the Bayon TV boxing arena. Group B matches will headline on Sunday cards.

Tournament match-ups
Group A
Saturday September 11
Tout Reachesay v Kao Lek
Saturday September 25
Bheut Kam v Tuot Reachesay
Saturday October 2
Kao Lek v Chan Ratana
Sunday October 10
Bheut Kam v Kao Lek
Saturday October 23
Chan Ratana v Tout Reachesay

Group B
Sunday September 12
Chey Kosal v Ven Sovan
Sunday September 26
Soy Phireak v Chey Kosal
Sunday October 3
Ven Sovan v Yok Yakill
Sunday October 17
Soy Phireak v Ven Sovan
Sunday October 24
Yok Yakill v Chey Kosal

MOST VIEWED

  • Phnom Penh placed in two-week lockdown

    The government has decided to place Phnom Penh in lockdown for two weeks, effective April 14 midnight through April 28, as Cambodia continues to grapple with the ongoing community outbreak of Covid-19, which has seen no sign of subsiding. According to a directive signed by Prime Minister

  • Cambodia on the verge of national tragedy, WHO warns

    The World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia warned that the country had reached another critical point amid a sudden, huge surge in community transmission cases and deaths. “We stand on the brink of a national tragedy because of Covid-19. Despite our best efforts, we are

  • Hun Sen: Stay where you are, or else

    Prime Minister Hun Sen warned that the two-week lockdown of Phnom Penh and adjacent Kandal provincial town Takmao could be extended if people are not cooperative by staying home. “Now let me make this clear: stay in your home, village, and district and remain where

  • Vaccination open to foreigners in Cambodia

    The Ministry of Health on April 8 issued an announcement on Covid-19 vaccination for foreigners residing and working in Cambodia, directing the Ministry of Labour and Vocational Training and local authorities to register them. Health minister Mam Bun Heng, who is also head of the inter-ministerial

  • Culture ministry: Take Tuol Sleng photos down, or else

    The Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts has told Irish photographer Matt Loughrey to take down the photos of Khmer Rouge victims at Tuol Sleng Genocidal Museum which he allegedly colourised and altered to show them smiling. The ministry said Loughrey's work is unacceptable, affecting

  • Cambodia gears up for muted New Year festival

    The recent curfew and restrictions imposed in the capital and other Covid-19 hotspots were intended to break the chain of transmission, Ministry of Health spokeswoman Or Vandine said as municipal and provincial authorities issued new directives banning certain activities during the upcoming Khmer New Year