Boxing’s longest reigning male titleholder is fully set for his next defense.
BoxingScene.com has confirmed that the Thammanoon Niyomtrong-Erick Rosa WBA strawweight title consolidation clash will take place on March 1 in Nakhon Sawan, Thailand. The date comes more than a month after Petchyindee Boxing Promotions claimed promotional rights through a purse bid hearing held during the WBA convention in Orlando, Florida.
Niyomtrong fights under the Petchyindee promotional umbrella, through Piyarat Vachirarattanawong’s Petpiya Fight Promotions out of Thailand.
Rosa (5-0, 1KO) will fight outside of his native Dominican Republic for the first time in his ambitious career. The 22-year-old southpaw from Santo Domingo—where all five pro fights have taken place—went all ten rounds in his October 2020 pro debut and upgraded to twelve rounds by his fourth pro fight, when he outpointed unbeaten Ricardo Astuvilca to win the now defunct interim WBA strawweight title.
An upgrade to the secondary ‘Regular’ title came in Rosa’s most recent fight, a twelve-round, split decision victory over Vic Saludar in December 2021. He went all of 2022 without a fight, with much of the final three months hoping to lure Niyomtrong to the U.S.
There was once a plan in place for Niyomtrong-Rosa to land on the undercard preceding the December 17 Frank Martin-Michel Rivera Showtime telecast. Visa issues nixed those plans, to the point of the WBA calling for a purse bid since the fight reached overdue status.
Petchyindee Boxing Promotions posted $140,000, outbidding Shuan Boxing ($122,000) who promotes Rosa and hoped to bring the fight either to D.R. or on a Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) card in early 2023.
The purse bid result meant that Niyomtrong (24-0, 9KOs)—best known in boxing circles as Knockout CP Freshmart—doesn’t have to leave Thailand. The 32-year-old from Surin has spent the entirety of his eleven year career in Asia, all with the lone fight outside of his home country coming in a July 2018 unanimous decision win over former WBC titlist Chaozhong Xiong in Qingdao, China.
Niyomtrong upgraded his secondary WBA title reign to full title status following a June 2016 decision win over Nicaragua’s Byron Rojas. Eleven title defenses have followed, most recently in a twelve-round win over countryman and former WBC titlist Wanheng ‘TBE’ Menayothin on July 20 in Chonburi, Thailand.
It also came with the understanding that Niyomtrong was very likely to next face Rosa.
By that point, Niyomtrong emerged as the longest reigning active male titlist. He earned that distinction last January, after Gary Russell Jr’s WBC featherweight title reign—which dated back to March 2015—came to an end with a twelve-round defeat to the Philippines’ Mark Magsayo.
Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox