By James Goyder
Sirimongkol Singmanasak maintained his nine year unbeaten streak by stopping Mohamadreza Hamze in the sixth round of their rematch at Rangsit International Stadium this afternoon.
The 36 year old is a three weight world champion but his glory days are well behind him and he spent time in prison after being arrested on drugs offences in 2009. This was the second time he had faced Hamze and, whereas the first fight in 2011 went the distance, this time around Sirimongkol was able to close the show.
The Thai veteran should have been awarded a knockdown in the opening round but the Iranian was ruled by the referee to have slipped. In the third Sirimongkol scored two knockdowns with a short straight right and a cuffing left both putting Hamze down although on each occasion he was off balance rather than badly hurt.
The Iranian recovered well and caught Sirimongkol with a few shots in the fourth but was still spending a lot of time soaking up combinations with his back on the ropes as the Thai fighter fired away with left hands to the body and overhand rights upstairs which, despite connecting cleanly, never seemed to do too much damage.
The fifth round followed the same pattern with Sirimongkol looking for the finish but seemingly lacking the power to seriously trouble an opponent who was content to cover up and take his best shots. It was all one way traffic though and when an overhand right from the former world champion put Hamze on his backside in the sixth the referee waived off the contest despite belated protests from the Iranian.
With the win Sirimongkol's record improves to 72-2 while Hamze's drops t0 2-2 but it's difficult to know where the Thai veteran will go from her. He clearly does not have the same sort of power at 147 lbs as he possessed during his prime in the lighter divisions and has benefited from being matched with very inexperienced opponents in recent years.
However the records reflect the fact that Sirimongkol is now the WBC Asia Council Welterweight Champion and has won 28 straight fights so it is possible he will be able to parlay that into one last big money match.