Russian fighter Firdavs Zhon Naimov’s first trip to Cambodia, where he sought to seek revenge on popular local boxer Prom Samnang, did not go according to plan, as he was knocked unconscious by a knee from his opponent at the August 13 Kun Khmer Grand Champion event at the Town Arena.
Three other foreign pugilists – two Thais and an Iranian – were also defeated by local Kun Khmer exponents at the event, with Chak Savin the only Cambodian fighter to taste defeat at the event.
Firdavs Zhon was previously knocked out in the first round by Samnang at the Thai Fight on February 26, as Samnang became the first Cambodian boxer to win the event twice in a row. The previous year, he also claimed a first-round victory, defeating three-time British champion Thomas Carpenter.
During the rematch, the Russian was wary, avoiding any heavy exchanges and surviving the first round. However, the strategy failed to pay off as round two saw Samnang land a flurry of well-placed knees and kicks to weaken his opponent. A further onslaught of knees and punches left the Russian exhausted and winded, facing a standing count.
He was caught with a perfectly delivered knee and knocked out soon after, giving Samnang a dominant second round victory.
2023 SEA Games gold medalist Chhoeung Lvey, who has not been seen in the ring since a first-round loss to Thai fighter Sami Banchamnek on June 26, reignited his fans’ passion by delivering a first-round knock-out elbow that put Thai boxer Sothanfa on the canvas.
At the same time, a strong kicking game by fellow gold medalist Moeun Mekhea saw Iranian Yousefi abandon the match at the end of round two, citing a lower leg injury.
Moeun Sokhuch forced a stoppage against Thai boxer Wansonkran in the second round, opening up a cut on his opponent’s head with a savage right elbow. The ringside medic was forced to declare a victory due to an excess of blood.
Chak Savin became the only local fighter who failed to secure a win, finding himself cut and then knocked out by Brazilian Alexsandro, who trains in Cambodia. Before the knock out, Savin had marked his opponent, who was sporting a large lump on the left of his head.
The heavy exchanges between the two brought the live audience to its feet, though the victory fell to the foreign fighter on this occasion.