Trương Cao Minh Phát (left) beat defending champion Nguyễn Trần Duy Nhất in the men's 63.5kg class at the National Muay Thai Championship in Thanh Hóa. Photo sggp.org.vn
HÀ NỘI — Trương Cao Minh Phát has defeated Nguyễn Trần Duy Nhất in the National Muay Thai Championship which closed in Thanh Hóa on Tuesday.
Phát of Bình Dương burst into tears after he was announced winner of the match in the men's 63.5kg category.
After three rounds, he won 3-2 after nearly knocking-out Nhất, who has dominated the national competition for 12 years.
As the top fighter in Vietnamese Muay Thai, Nhất of HCM City was confident and launched attacks early time but young Phát was undaunted. He struggled in the the first round but rose up and took his lead after knocking Nhất down in the second round. Near the end of the round, Nhất suffered a series of punches which almost stopped him.
Nhất tried to gain more points in the third round but Phát was successful in defence and he maintained his lead till the end.
The 24-year-old's victory was a shock for the sport as Nhất has been viewed as close to impossible to beat.
Nhất's busy schedule this year could have contributed to the defeat. He won a bronze in the world championship last month and is preparing for the ONE Championship next week in HCM City.
Earlier at the national tournament, world champion Huỳnh Hà Hữu Hiếu of HCM City was defeated by Hà Nội's Trần Thị Trúc in the women's 48kg class on points.
The tournament ended with Hà Nội on top of medal table with nine gold, four silver and two bronze medals. Hosts Thanh Hóa and HCM City were second and third, respectively.
The championship lured more than 200 athletes from 26 cities and provinces, competing in two age groups for both men and women on August 22-27. — VNS