Lethwei Rundown: November 2019
November and December are the busiest months especially with the Kayin New Year events. I will once again look ahead and highlight some things in November that are worth mentioning.
Before we get into the events I want to address an interview Tun Lwin Moe has done with my friends over at Myanmar Lethwei Collection. In November last year Tun Lwin Moe had eye surgery because of damage he sustained from a previous fight and was supposed to be out for a year. He said in the interview his sight is still cloudy and doesn't expect to be back for the next two years. For the time being him and his father will focus on his younger brother Thant Zin and guide him through his lethwei journey.
Air KBZ Fight 6 (November 3)
(This event has already taken place, results are here)
Veronika vs. Miriam Sabot (Italy) (57kg)
Too Too vs. Tokeshi Kohei (76kg) (Main event)
Soe Lin Oo vs. Shwe Yar Man II (71kg)
Saw Nico (Germany) vs. Hmawbi Zar Mani (78kg)
Ye Thway Ni vs. Auk Chin Lay (61kg)
Saw Shwe Lay vs. Chaggaphan (57kg) (Thailand)
Saw Darwait vs. Naing Win Tun (63kg) (Opening fight)
The 6th edition of the Air KBZ Aung Lan Championship. Despite being called an Aung Lan, these are single challenge fights. This event allows for winners at last years event to ‘defend’ their position as champion of their weight-class. If they do not appear on next years event and defend, they will lose that privilege. Whether they will appear at a following event is completely up to the promoters. This year it will be Saw Darwait and Tokeshi Kohei defending. Daiki Kaneko, who will have his first fight in K-1 on November 24th, has the 2017 Air KBZ belt but no longer has the champions title as he did not partake in the 2018 event.
Timely, Markus Bell interviewed Saw Nico in Yangon for the Myanmar Times, so go read that little piece to get to know the Angolan born.
The two most interesting fights here should be obvious. I have previously explained thoroughly how Shwe Yar Man ties into the mix among the top boxers. He won the first fight with Soe Lin Oo, but lost his rematch with Phyan Thway favoring a possible knee injury afterwards. A loss to Soe Lin Oo now would put more pressure on his fight with Tun Tun Min in December because if he loses there too, which unfortunately may be likely.. he might have to let go of his first class status as quickly as he received it.
Tokeshi Kohei is facing the toughest challenge so far in his 14-fight lethwei career when he faces Too Too. Hailing from Bu Kyun village, Yenanchaung city in the Magway Region, Too Too was born in October 1990 and has been with coach Kyaw Soe (former KLN and now Nagar Mahn) for the majority of his career. He may only have a few titles and medals to his name but his unbeaten record speaks for itself. He is one of the few male lethwei fighters who has gold medals in both gloved boxing and muay thai. Should Tokeshi win, it would be an absolutely monumental achievement. Unthinkable actually.
Previous editions of this event have aired on the SkyNet DTH Facebook page, but this time it won’t. Fan videos should be available after the event. It starts at 2pm MMT / 7:30 GMT / 2:30am ET.
(64th) Kayin State Day (November 7 - 11)
The line-up is too big to paste here but it's available on my personal site. The Karen people are the third largest ethnic group in Myanmar and this giant festival of fights is celebrating the founding of Kayin state on November 7, 1955. There will be fights the entire day, though only the main card will be televised. There are no real standout fights with significant meaning but there are a lot of guys I cannot wait to see again: Mite Yine vs. Ye Thway Ni, Hein Tun Aung vs. Natkhat Aung, Pha Kyaw Hae, Htoo Nay Thu, Saw Min Naing, Kaung Kaung, Saw Ba Hein, Aung Hein, Kyar Pauk and Shwe Tun Yon to name a few.
If sufficient coverage is available (with people filming their TV) this event is not to be missed. Some opening fights, presumably Kyar Pwe or Aung Lan, will be streamed on the official Canal+ Facebook page each day.
New Generation, Bilin (November 10 - 11)
Sunday November 10th:
Min Kyaw vs. Linn Htet Naing
Nga Ye vs. Kyaw Wai Soe
Saw Ba Hket vs. Chit Suu Nge
One Star vs. Min Htet Aung
Monday November 11th:
Sein Moe Pyan vs. Saw Soe Oo
Chit Thae vs. Aung Aung Htoo
Saw Sa War vs. Soe Maung Oo
A decent card down in Bilin in Mon State. With two worthy main events, especially the banger, and rematch, between Saw Sa War and Soe Maung Oo. They first met in the 75kg Lethwei Nation Fight final in October last year which Saw Sa War won by decision. Most fights have no implications really it's more about the new guys catching some eyes. A good couple of days if you're around to catch it. Both days kick off at 6pm local time.
New Generation, Pyin Oo Lwin (November 10 - 11)
Sein Lone Chaw vs. Thar Dein
Inn Thar vs. Doe Lay
Shwe Taung Thar vs. Naing Wan
Shwe Lu Lin vs. Thein Soe
Hla Lay Sein vs. Suu Mite
Auk Chin Thway vs. Ye Ye Tauk
If you can't make it to Bilin then the Mahar EntHtooKanThar Pagoda in Pyin Oo Lwin is a perfect substitute. Also an event with newer guys with some Golden Belt Champions in the mix (Sein Lone Chaw and Thein Soe).
After Sein Lone Chaw won his championship in 2017 he fell off the radar due to poor results and management. It was quite tough to track him for a while because he wasn't getting the spotlight. He had three fights on decent cards this year that ended in draws and i'm glad to see him more active. Thein Soe recently got murdered on the WLC 10 card, go check that out :) Inn Thar and Doe Lay would be a fight i'm interested in but unlucky for us this won't stream anywhere. These two festival days also start at 6pm local time.
New Generation, Dedaye (Ayeyarwady) (November 11)
Tun Min Naing vs. Thar Win Tun
Thet Oo Kyaw vs. Saw Phoe Khwar / Kabar Shar
Khin Mi Mi Kyaw vs. Ngu War
Nyan Gyi vs. Thar Nge Lay
Saw Ye Htoo vs. Than Phyo Zaw
Cherry Maung vs. Nann A Mwe Hom
Thamein Nyi Nyi Hein vs. Daung San Lay
Naing Lin Tun returns with another solid event. This may only be his fourth event, but he knows what we want. He bagged Tun Tun Min's brother Tun Min Naing and also has four women fighting. Nann A Mwe Hom, who recently fought Shwe Ko Lay to a draw in Taiwan, will have her second lethwei fight here facing Cherry Maung.
Like many, including Shwe Ko Lay, she has an active career in boxing and proves that gloved boxers can adapt just fine. Every time someone is willing to cross over it's something that should be nourished. Too many girls leave as quickly as they joined purely because of how fights are handled for the women. They get much more recognition in boxing, and are able to complete many time more. It may seem like an insignificant gesture by Naing Lin Tun, but booking these fights should be on every promoters agenda.
Than Lwin Khet Sport has once again partnered up and will stream the event on their Facebook page. 1pm MMT / 6:30 GMT / 1:30am ET
Kaytumadi Fight 2019, Taungoo (November 11)
Saw Min Naing vs. Tun Naing Oo
Tun Min Latt vs. Ye Min Naing
Kyar Thway vs. Saw Thar Gyi
Thway Thit vs. Wan Too
Another event on the 11th. While Tun Min Naing is tearing it up in Dedaye, his brother Tun Min Latt clashes with Ye Min Naing in Taungoo. It also features 2019 Golden Belt Champions Tun Naing Oo and my boy Saw Min Naing.
In addition to these fights, there will be a new type of tournament from the mind of promoter Aung Naing Moe. The event takes place at Kaytumadi Indoor Stadium, Taungoo City, Bago Region and starts at 2pm MMT.
Thaton Speed Challenge Fight (November 12 - 13)
Tuesday November 12th:
Ye Htet Soe vs. Thet Soe Pay
Khun Arkar vs. Ye Naing Oo
Wednesday November 13th:
Thuya Moe vs. Tun Linn Aung
Naing Lay Sein vs. Ye Thway Aung
Mostly newer guys, but interesting enough to mention because Kyar Man Hon Sports is sponsoring so there might be a stream. Not confirmed. Event starts at 7pm MMT / 12:30 GMT / 7:30am ET at the Paw Taw Mu Pagoda, Thaton Township, Mon State.
Lethwei Fight 3: Yangon (November 24)
Paik Htwe vs. Ali Qaradaghy (Kurdistan)
Ye Thway Ni vs. Yodwitthaya Sangmanee Gym (Thailand)
Lethee Moe vs. Thet Soe Pay
Saw Ye Htoo vs. Salai Chan Myae Ko
Hantharwaddy vs. Shwe Chit Aung
Banyar vs. Saw Min Aung
Comparable to a Lethwei Nation Fight, the Lethwei Fight series is a small event with some foreign competition. Paik Htwe was previously beaten up by a smaller Saw Min Naing, so I don’t know how I feel when he’s facing Ali. He put up a nice montage of him training in Hpa-an with coach U Aung Din, a former boxer in the 80’s.
The co-main has Ye Thway Ni facing a regular in lethwei: Yodwitthaya. The event will broadcast on Canal+ Myanmar. For those in the area, Thein Phyu Stadium is the place to be at 2pm MMT.
Due to a busy schedule and time constraints I have truncated this months schedule and cut out the least important events. For an up-to-date schedule you know where to go.