Something you will commonly see in Muay Thai is a matchup of skill vs size between foreigners and Thais. It is commonly assumed that since Thai’s have a lot more experience in the ring, they should give up weight if they fight foreigners.

In the battle of experience vs size, the smaller fighter usually wins on points if the fight goes the distance. The problem for the smaller fighters is they have to survive 5 rounds without getting KOed in order to win. This is a lot easier said than done when you have someone actively hunting for the KO.

The match between Rungravee Sasiprapa vs. Dimitry Varets is a perfect example of this battle of experience vs size. Even though both fighters were listed at 63.5kg, it was very obvious how much of a size difference there was.

The line is just demonstrated the height difference, obviously it is not precise.

The line is just demonstrated the height difference, obviously, it is not precise.

While Rungravee is listed at 5 foot 4 inches, his opponent looks to be at least 6 feet taller or more. This is a huge amount of reach and height advantage for a fighter to have. That being said, Rungravee is used to fighting people who are a lot taller than him. This is probably one of the reasons why he accepted the fight.

Check out the KO below:

Fight Breakdown – A Costly Mistake

Given that fact that Rungravee was significantly shorter than his opponent, he would need to utilize his speed and quickness if he wanted to beat Dimitry. Being able to get in and land shots is not easy when your opponent can land shots at you from a distance without consequence.

Do you want to know how to beat taller fighters? Make sure you check out our Short vs Tall series

Starting off both fighters were gauging their distance. You can see in this clip the fighters exchanging a couple kicks and punches.

Both fighters exchange a couple shots in the early part of round 1.

In the early phase of the round you can see Dimitry hunting for the head kick with his right foot. In this next clip he throws the quick right kick aiming at the same spot he lands the KO. Luckily for Rungravee he sees the kick and leans back.

Notice how Dimitry was hunting for the quick right kick. He knew that if he could land it the fight would be over.

Getting Caught

Following these brief exchanges comes the moment Rungravee gets caught with the beautifully timed kick by Dimitry. It was a very well timed kick by Dimitry that went right through the guard of Rungravee. Given the height differences, Rungravee is not used to opponent’s being able to throw a head kick from that position.

The preview to this fight lists both fighters at 63.5, but given Dimitry’s size, it’s hard to imagine them the same weight class.

Unfortunately for Rungravee, he looks like he is in a lot of pain as he is on the ground recovering from the head kick. Hopefully he makes a speedy recovery and doesn’t suffer any long term damage.

Rungravee looked like he was in a lot of pain as he was lying on the ground. I hope he has a speedy recovery and no long term damage.

Lessons Learned

This fight demonstrates that fighters with a lot of experience and skill can still get caught in the ring. Nobody is invincible no matter how much skill they have. Muay Thai is a sport that is unforgiving. It is extremely important to always work on your defense to ensure you minimize the risk you experience when you enter the ring.

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While you can never fully eliminate risk, you can always work on reducing your chance of getting hurt. If you enter the ring, you always have to accept the fact that anything can happen, no matter how much preparation you do.

What’s Next For Rungravee?

Rungravee’s next fight is scheduled to be in the Lion Fight 19 on Nov. 21 against Ognjen Topic. Given the brutal nature of this KO, I hope he doesn’t take any fights before this and let’s himself recover from the KO.

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