Panpayak “The Angel Warrior” Jitmuangnon introduced himself to ONE Championship fans with an impressive win in his promotional debut on Friday, 7 December.
The Thai star showcased his impressive striking repertoire as he went the distance with Portugal’s Rui Botelho in a ONE Super Series Muay Thai flyweight encounter.
It ended with a clear-cut unanimous decision after three rounds of action for the 22-year-old at ONE: DESTINY OF CHAMPIONS, but he was pushed all the way to the final bell.
In his ONE debut, Panpayak Jitmuangnon turns in a Muay Thai masterclass to clinch a unanimous decision victory over Rui Botelho!Watch the full event LIVE & FREE on the ONE Super App http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast
Posted by ONE Championship on Friday, December 7, 2018
Both men appeared to stick to their game plans in the opening round as “The Angel Warrior” utilized his reach to land straight punches and kicks – probing his opponent to set up his trademark left high kick.
Botelho tried to work his way inside behind boxing combinations and had some success connecting on the two-division Lumpinee Stadium World Champion.
It was more of the same in the second, but the two elite strikers threw with more intent. Panpayak opened with a two-punch combination and kept Botelho at bay with his jab and teeps.
His opponent worked through the long-range strikes to land his left hook and tried to flurry whenever he was on the inside.
Late in the round, Panpayak finally found a home for the left high kick, which wobbled the Portuguese man and sent him stumbling to the canvas as he backed away.
The Dinamite Team athlete managed to climb to his feet and see out the round, but it left him in a deficit coming into the final stanza.
The Thai was supremely confident in round three, and though Botelho looked like he had recovered from the knockdown, his output was not as powerful as before.
“The Angel Warrior” continued to land with his push kicks and roundhouse kicks, and looked to be cruising to victory – although he did touch the mat when he was caught by his opponent’s left hand.
However, it was not ruled to be a knockdown, and Panpayak regained control of the contest to secure a comfortable win.
It was a composed performance for Panpayak, who got three rounds of vital experience. It was the first time he had competed outside Thailand, his first contest in a cage, and his first experience competing in 4-ounce mixed martial arts gloves.
He extended his phenomenal record to 244-40-3, which may mark him as a frontrunner for a World Title opportunity in 2019.