The former Lumpinee Muay Thai World Champion got exactly that, as the Russian slugger brought the fight to him throughout their bantamweight Muay Thai showdown inside the Singapore Indoor Stadium.
Both me engaged in a thrilling back-and-forth battle, and after three rounds of action, Muangthai walked away with a razor-close split decision.
Muangthai cracked into his rival’s defense with ease, relying on his stinging leg kicks to close the distance and attack him with punches in bunches.
His attacks kept the Fight Club Archangel Michael representative at bay, but Kuzmin countered with huge teeps through the middle and feints in return.
After feeling each other out, both strikers seemed tentative to step back into action, causing referee Olivier Coste to issue a warning.
“Elbow Zombie” increased the tempo, but he stuck with the same tactics to land shots on Kuzmin.
The Russian responded by going toe-to-toe with the Buriram native. He bravely fought in the pocket and found his mark with a dangerous hook-uppercut combination, which narrowly missed his rival’s face.
When the second canto kicked off, Muangthai started strong with the same aggressive game plan. He continuously looked for a way to hit Kuzmin with his infamous elbows in the clinch, but the Russian’s pace and head movement threw him off on most attempts.
Kuzmin once again minimized his opponent’s onslaught with teeps, and when the Thai decided to come into the pocket with different strikes, the 24-year-old simply pivoted out and sought to connect with spinning back elbows.
Sensing that the fight was close, both athletes kicked off the final round with intent. Muangthai didn’t waste time attacking his foe through the middle, and though the Russian’s footwork and movement made it hard for him, “Elbow Zombie” continued to advance with confidence.
The Yekaterinburg native did manage to throw off Muangthai with his close-range weapons, but the Thai veteran simply ended the bout with more volume and aggression.
After three rounds of action, “Elbow Zombie” was declared the winner by split decision, pushing his overall record to an astounding 201-43-4.