Update: 20:39 | 01/10/2022
Vietnamese boxer Tran Van Thao won the International Boxing Association (IBA) World Title, after defeating his Filippo opponent Prince Andrew Larios by a spectacular knock-out in the first round of the fight on September 30.
Tran Van Thao became the first Vietnamese male athlete to win the world's International Boxing Association (IBA) bantamweight belt after defeating Filipino Prince Andrew Laurio Friday night.
Vietnamese boxer Tran Van Thao (R) punches Filipino Prince Andrew Laurio at the IBA bantamweight world championship match in HCMC, September 30, 2022.
More than two minutes into the match held in HCMC, Thao unleashed a powerful right-hand punch into Laurio's face, causing the opponent to collapse.
Despite trying to get up, Laurio could not stand, prompting the referee to stop the match and declare the victory by knock-out for the 30-year-old Thao.
"Thank you to Laurio. As a fighter, you will be back stronger," Thao wrote on his Facebook page after winning the match.
Thao became the second Vietnamese boxer to win a world championship belt. In October last year, Nguyen Thi Thu Nhi won the first-ever World Boxing Organization belt for Vietnam.
Thao is the first local fighter to make his name internationally. He shot to fame after defeating Indonesia's George Lumoly to become the first Vietnamese boxer to win a World Boxing Council (WBC) Asia title in November 2017.
But he could not compete in the 2018 WBC championship after sustaining injuries from a traffic accident. Since he could not defend his title, organizers decided to strip him of the belt.
He could not compete for nearly a year because of Covid-19 and injury.
Early this year, Thao enjoyed an easy bantamweight (54 kilo) win against Thailand's Phayom Boonrueang at a pro boxing event in HCMC.
The Vietnamese boxing star has pocketed 15 wins and one loss.