Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Kao Roomchang is perfect against ferocious Vung Noy

Kao Roomchang is perfect against ferocious Vung Noy

Kao Roomchang is perfect against ferocious Vung Noy


Kao Roomchang overpowers familiar foe Vung Noy with harder kicks and heavier punches to earn a close decision victory Sunday at Bayon TV arena

Photo by: Robert Starkweather
The fight referee awards Kao Roomchang (right) the victory by points over Vung Noy (left) after their bout.

SUNDAY'S bout was Vung Noy’s third meeting with Kao Roomchang since July, when the latter scored two knockdowns en route to a decisive points victory. The two met again in November in the semifinals of the lightweight tournament. Kao Roomchang won that bout, too, but not by nearly as much.

On Sunday, they fought blow-for-blow in a bloody, high-wattage brawl. Vung Noy turned in a ferocious performance, his best effort to date, but remained unable to beat the stronger, harder-hitting Kao Roomchang.

Vung Noy cut Kao Roomchang twice with elbows; a tiny nick at the hairline in the second round, and a thicker gash just next to it in the third. The larger cut bled for the rest of the fight, covering Kao Roomchang’s forehead with a gory splash of crimson, but never became factor.

“He’s got a thick face, Vung Noy,” remarked Kao Roomchang afterward. “I hit him with many elbows, but he never cut.”

It didn’t matter. Kao Roomchang’s strength advantage, evident early, proved enough.

Seconds into the first round, Kao Roomchang landed a spinning back kick to the face that put Vung Noy on the canvas, and he knocked Vung Noy off his feet with powerful low kicks several times throughout the bout.

In a supercharged series of clashes in the middle rounds, the pair enthralled the packed house with a wild exchange of spinning back kicks, fists and elbows.

Vung Noy scored with the cut, but Kao Roomchang never appeared hurt, and the blood only energised his offense.

He punished Vung Noy with a series of powerful punches late in the third round, sending Vung Noy hard into the ropes.

With the threat of stoppage in the air, Kao Roomchang unloaded in the fourth, opening the round with a hard left-right-kick combination and never letting up.

He landed more low kicks, sending Vung Noy back to the canvas, and rocked him with three staggering straight left, right elbow combinations.

Vung Noy countered with elbows from both sides and knees to the body, scoring well, but he was unable to slow a relentless Kao Roomchang.

With the crowd clapping and chanting in rhythm to the music, the pair finished round four with a vicious exchange of elbows at centre ring, then returned wearily to the corners.

“That was everything I had,” Kao Roomchang said.

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