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Herlan Gomez KOs Thai opponent to become new Asian bantamweight champ

Herlan Gomez.
By Stewart Tan

MANILA--Filipino Herlan Gomez clinched the vacant Asian Boxing Federation (ABF) bantamweight belt after a stunning fourth round technical knockout win over Thai Wicha Phulaikhao on Wednesday night at the Spaceplus Bangkok RCA in Bangkok, Thailand.

This was a huge bounce back for the Enrique B. Magalona, Negros Occidental-native after he failed to capture the World Boxing Association Asia bantamweight belt last year.

After testing each other in the opening round, Gomez went to work in the second round as he scored two knockdowns on Phulaikhao but the Thai boxer managed to beat the referee's count.

Gomez continued his aggression in the third round with his vicious left and right combinations until he floored Phulaikhao anew for the third time but the Thai managed to escape the count.

The Filipino boxer went for the kill in the fourth round as he unloaded numerous combinations on the Thai boxer until the former scored another knockdown. This time, the referee decided to stop the match at the 39 seconds mark of the round

With the victory, the 23-year-old Gomez improved his impressive record to seven wins as opposed to one defeat. He also nailed his fourth knockout victory with his stoppage upset over Phulaikhao.

On the part of the 41-year-old Phulaikhao, who was known as Pigmy Kokietgym, his boxing record dropped to 64-20-2 win-loss-draw, with 28 of his victories by way of stoppages.

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