By James Goyder
Teerachai Kratingdaenggym has one of the most impressive records in the welterweight division and the Thai remains undefeated after stopping Vladimir Baez with a perfectly timed right hook to successfully defend his PABA welterweight title Samut Prakan this afternoon.
The finish came in the fourth round but Teerachai has looked firmly in control from the start against an opponent whose main claim to fame was going the distance with Jason Pagara in 2013. Baez had only fought twice since then, stopping overmatched opponents in the opening round on both occasions.
The Dominican has clearly done his homework on Teerachai and set out to keep a high guard and use head movement to slip the jab. Baez was looking to time the Thai's attacks and counter with an overhand right but he couldn't land anything of note in the opening round.
In the second stanza Baez started to really load up on his shots but everything was falling short as Teerachai kept his distance and continued to score with that laser like jab. Towards the end of the round the champion started to throw in some right hands and scored with a couple of one-two combinations.
Baez looked to land more power shots at the start of the third but Teerachai easily evaded them and came back with a left jab-left hook combination. The Dominican was eating jabs but he did score with a left hook as they traded on the inside at the end of the round.
It seemed that Teerachai could probably pick up the pace whenever he wanted and in the fourth round he did just that. After setting his stall out to jab at the start of the round he started to follow up with straight right hands which crashed through the guard of the Dominican.
For the first time in the fight it looked like Baez might be in trouble and Teerachai was able to capitalize brutally. Another jab found the mark and he followed it up with a right hook which instantly separated the Dominican from his senses.
Teerachai followed up with a left hook but it missed the target because Baez was already crashing to the canvass. He never looked like beating the count and the Thai was already celebrating wildly when the referee sensibly decided to call off the contest.
Baez drops to 21-3-2 with this defeat, although it's worth noting that very few of his wins have come at the expense of opponents with winning records. While he might have been handpicked as an opponent for Teerachai it was still a very impressive performance from the Thai who moves up to 35-0 and could find himself fighting for a world title before the end of the year.