THE MYANMAR TIMES
Punching above weight
THE wait is over.
The much-anticipated clash pitting local heartthrob Aung La Nsang against Alain Ngalain is the main event tonight at the Thuwana Stadium in what has been billed as a David versus Goliath fight.
Aung La Nsang, aka the Burmese Python, is the MMA middleweight champion while his adversary, Cameroon-born but representing Hong Kong, is a four-time Muay Thai kickboxing champion of the world and a heavyweight at that, which is why the fight has created such a buzz among the local boxing fans.
Expect Ngalain to weigh in around 104kg for the fight and that means Aung La Nsang, tipped to go in at about 93kg, will be punching well beyond his weight.
Expect the stadium to be packed to the rafters.
One area where the local champion holds a clear advantage is that his opponent has less experience fighting MMA. Whereas Aung La Nsang boasts a record of 20 wins against 10 losses, Ngalain has fought only six times, won three and lost three of them.
The other factor in favour of Aung La Sang is his age: he is ten years younger than Ngalain, who is 42.
As for Ngalain, weight aside, his strength lies in the power of his punches and the back kicks which he applies to telling effect.
How Aung La Nsang, Sa, given his experience and superior ring craft, fares against his adversary remains to be seen.
The local champion has called out to his fans to come and cheer him. “Everybody come and watch me fight. I don’t feel under any kind of pressure. I’ll show what it takes a middleweight to overcome a heavyweight – superior skill, speed and determination.’’
He even predicted a second-round knockout.
NZ, ’Boks in 2019 World Cup opener
THE New Zealand All Blacks will kick off their Rugby World Cup title defense against South Africa in a contest between two of the sport’s heavyweights.
Rugby World Cup organizers announced the match schedule for the Sept 20-Nov 2 tournament yesterday, exactly two years out from the tournament final in Yokohama.
The two-time defending champion All Blacks have never lost a pool game in the World Cup, but that record will be tested when they face the Springboks in a Pool B match on Sept 21. It will be the first time the teams have met in the pool stage.
New Zealand has won three World Cup titles — in 1987, 2011 and ‘15. South Africa has won the sport’s showcase tournament twice, including a famous 15-12 win over New Zealand in Johannesburg in 1995.
The winner of the match at Yokohama would likely play Scotland or Japan in the quarterfinals.
Two-time champion Australia, which lost the 2015 final to the All Blacks in England, will kick off its campaign against Fiji in Sapporo in Pool D, then faces Wales on Sept 29 in Tokyo.
Host Japan will open the tournament against a qualifier from Europe on Sept 20, 2019.
England opens its campaign in a difficult Pool C on Sept 22 against Tonga in Sapporo, then faces the United States on Sept 26 in Kobe, Argentina on Oct 5 in Tokyo and France in Yokohama on Oct 12. France, a three-time finalist, will face Argentina in their opening match in what could be a decisive match for group standings.
The Pool C winner faces a quarterfinal against the runner-up from pool D, involving Australia, Wales, Georgia, Fiji and an American qualifier. – AP