Lerdsila Phuket Top Team believes his fourth ONE Super Series win in a row should be enough to earn him a World Title shot.
Last Friday, 16 August, the Thai legend scored the 190th win of his professional career thanks to a second-round TKO in his flyweight Muay Thai match against Savvas “The Baby Face Killer” Michael at ONE: DREAMS OF GOLD.
The 38-year-old eight-time Muay Thai World Champion showed flashes of his mesmerizing skill in an even first round as he countered his rival’s attacks with kicks, sweeps, and dumps, but he would save his most decisive offense until the opening moments of the second stanza.
Muay Thai legend Lerdsila takes home a TKO victory over Savvas Michael!????: Check local listings for global broadcast details????: Watch on the ONE Super App ???? http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp
Posted by ONE Championship on Friday, August 16, 2019
He caught Michael’s right leg and planted him hard onto the canvas with a dump that caused an injury to the Cypriot’s left arm and left him unable to continue.
Though he regrets the way the contest ended, Lerdsila was still delighted to win and maintain his perfect record in The Home Of Martial Arts – especially because of the adversity he faced during his preparation.
Once the action was over in Bangkok’s Impact Arena, he reveals the struggle he had to make it into the Circle to compete, his pride about competing in Thailand for the first time in years, and who he wants to face in his next match-up.
ONE Championship: How did you feel going into this fight?
Lerdsila Phuket Top Team: I actually got injured before the fight. I pulled a muscle in my leg while hitting pads and couldn’t train for nearly two weeks. All I could do was ride the bike, and do some swimming.
The doctor told me to rest for three months, and my gym owner wanted me to pull out, but there was already so much promotion behind [the bout], and I had been training so hard.
I didn’t want to pull out, so I decided to go ahead with the fight. I couldn’t run to [lose] weight, I just had to eat less.
ONE: How did your injury affect your approach at the start of the contest?
LPTT: I could feel my leg hurting in the first round, but I just had to hold it together and go for it.
Right away, I noticed how much slower he was than me, I was just that much faster. From there, my confidence increased.
ONE: How did you feel as the second round started?
LPTT: Going into the second round, I felt really confident, but was still a bit worried about my leg.
I told myself, ‘It is only six more minutes!’ so I was just focused on pushing through.
ONE: How did you pull off the TKO sequence?
LPTT: I threw the hook right as he was about to knee. The punch connected. Then I grabbed his leg and dumped him.
I knew the hook hurt him because I could feel him lose control a little. When I dumped him, he put his arm out and landed the wrong way.
I didn’t know exactly what had happened after that, but he took a long time to get up. I saw there was a problem with his elbow. After that, the referee stopped it.
ONE: How did you feel about the win?
LPTT: I’m happy to win. I love to compete, and getting to showcase my skills makes me happy regardless of the outcome.
Each fight is important to me. I work really hard, and put in a lot of work when I compete [for my] training and preparation. It is a great feeling to be able to put it all to use.
I feel bad about what happened to Michael’s arm. I didn’t expect that to happen. He’s going to have to take at least three months off, and I feel bad about that.
ONE: What did it mean to you to compete in Thailand again after so long?
LPTT: It was a very proud moment for me to fight in Thailand in front of a Thai audience.
ONE: What is next for you?
LPTT: I’d really like to fight for a World Title with ONE Championship.
I would prefer a kickboxing World Title, and to fight the new World Champion, Ilias Ennahachi. Rodtang Jitmuangnon is the Muay Thai World Champion in my weight class, and I don’t want to fight a Thai for the World Title.
I have fought a lot in kickboxing in China, and feel very competent in that discipline. My style also suits kickboxing.
I think I have what it takes to beat Ilias Ennahachi.