On the Manny Pacquiao-Chris Algieri undercard November 15, Ukrainian Vasyl “Hi -Tech” Lomachenko (2-1) takes on Thai featherweight Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo (52-1) in what on paper should be a close fight given the Thai’s record. But don’t bet on it.
For starters, Lomachenko, who possesses every skill imaginable, including incredible stamina, finished his amateur career with a career record of 396-1, with his only loss to Albert Selimov, which he avenged twice.
Conversely, Piriyapinyo follows a pattern of fighters from Thailand rarely fighting outside their home country comfort zone. The only time this slickster did it, he lost to Chris John in 2012 in Singapore. However, fighting one of the greatest amateur fighters in history who hit the pro ranks running will be an even more daunting task for Piriyapinyo.
A review of Chonlatarm’s record reveals that his level of opposition has been less than compelling with perhaps his biggest wins coming against fading fellow Thai Yoddamrong Sithyodthong (alias Damong Kongsuk) in 2006 and 2007.
Now one might be tempted to use boxing logic which is dangerous at best and point out that Orlando Salido recently beat Thai warrior Terdsak Kokietgym in a life and death battle that may well be the Fight of the Year, and if a Thai can do that to a Mexican in Tijuana, Mexico and particularly to one who beat Lomachenko, albeit controversially, then certainly a Thai could do it to Vasyl in Macao. But Kokietgym (53-5-1), alias Pit Bull, is not your everyday Thai fighter and has fought in Nevada thrice, New York, Arizona, the Philippines twice, Mexico, and Japan.
Though Lomachenko is a bit of a slow starter, I would not go to the refrigerator on this one. As soon as he finds his rhythm, his fast in-and-out style will confuse and quickly overwhelm Chonlatarn perhaps ending the contest with a signature Lomachenko body shot.
Looking ahead, there is talk of matching Vasyl with Nicholas “Axeman” Walters who recently put the axe to Nonito Donaire. Guillermo Rigondeaux has also been mentioned as a future opponent but I look for Lomachenko to fight someone less daunting…