Tawanchai Sees ‘Room For Improvement’ In Kickboxing Despite Incredible Knockout Of Kiria
Tawanchai PK Saenchai proved that he’s ready to go after the featherweight kickboxing division’s elite in his first contest under those rules in ONE Championship.
The reigning ONE Featherweight Muay Thai World Champion met an elite-level veteran in Davit Kiria at ONE Fight Night 13 on Prime Video, and he dismantled the Georgian striker en route to a convincing third-round TKO win last Friday, August 4.
Tawanchai blasted Kiria with thudding kicks throughout their clash at Lumpinee Boxing Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand, eventually stopping him with a devastating blow to the right arm.
The finish marked a successful transition into kickboxing for the Thai phenom, who has now won his last five outings following a defeat to legendary compatriot Sitthichai Sitsongpeenong in 2021 – and he doesn’t plan on slowing down.
He told onefc.com afterward:
“Losing to Sitthichai was a big disappointment for me so I made a goal in my mind that I will not lose to anyone else.”
Tawanchai’s relentless barrage of kicks was literally bone-crushing.
After the bout, Kiria revealed that his forearm was shattered by the PK Saenchai representative’s shin, although Tawanchai admitted that he was none the wiser at the moment of impact. Instead, he was simply sticking to his game plan in order to fend off his rival’s powerful punches.
The 24-year-old explained:
“I wasn’t really thinking or feeling anything [when I landed the final kick] because I was just stopping him from him getting closer to me, so I had been doing my kicks since the first round.”
While the performance and its painful conclusion set the combat sports world alight, the humble Pattaya native is remaining grounded.
He wants to chase gold in a second sport, but he knows there’s still more work required to become a force under the different striking parameters that kickboxing offers.
“I don’t think I am in the place to say that I’m the best on the planet or anything. I think it’s up to the fans and up to my supporters to what they would say.
“I feel like there’s still a lot of room for improvement for me, especially in kickboxing rules. I don’t think I’m that good at kickboxing, and there’s still a lot of things that I need to improve.”
Tawanchai Looking Ahead To Superbon Defense, Potential Challenge Of Allazov
Although Tawanchai PK Saenchai is coming off a massive win last Friday, there won’t be much time to sit back and enjoy it, as the surging striker already has his next assignment booked.
He’ll defend his ONE Featherweight Muay Thai World Title against fellow Thai superstar Superbon Singha Mawynn in the main event of ONE Fight Night 15 on October 6, and he’s already focused on that challenge – especially after Superbon’s latest knockout of Tayfun Ozcan.
“His timing was great against Ozcan. He was really good at finding the right time to strike his opponent and that made his strikes successful.
“I think it will be a fun fight. I think we have close skills in terms of skill sets, so I think it will be entertaining.”
Of course, fans are also wondering if Tawanchai might challenge ONE Featherweight Kickboxing World Champion Chingiz Allazov, who successfully defended his belt in the main event last Friday.
Allazov expressed some uncertainty about his future after clearing out the top featherweight kickboxing contenders, but if he returns, Tawanchai would love to face him for the belt.
The Thai favorite is happy to pay his dues and work his way up, but he would not turn down the chance to face “Chinga” for a second strap if the offer does come through.
“I can’t say for sure [whether I’ll get to fight Allazov] because it’s up to ONE Championship which opponent they’re gonna give me, but it’s my dream to get a World Title belt in kickboxing.”