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World Boxing Federation Champions Of The Past: Fahlan Sakkreerin

Posted on March 3, 2016                                              Bookmark and Share
By: Clive Baum



Since the World Boxing Federation was originally founded by American Larry Carrier in 1988, many of the sportís biggest names have won a WBF title, and proudly defended the blue, red and gold belt all over the world.

In the Champions Of The Past Series we take a closer look at some of the boxers who held WBF titles in years gone by, from lesser known champions to world renowned fighters, legends of the sport and current or future Hall of Famers.


As is the case with many Asian boxers, it is hard to confirm the accuracy of some of his earlier fights, but according to former WBF World Flyweight Champion Fahlan Sakkreerin from Thailand made his professional debut on June 30 1988 and lost on points after eight rounds.

The man who beat him was no slouch, as Chana Porpaoin (1-0 at the time) went on to win the WBA World Strawweight title in 1993 and 2001 and defend that belt successfully eight times, before retiring in 2006 with a 53-4-5 (19) record.

Born on April 10 1968, the southpaw from Maha Sarakham province had yet to turn twenty years old when he came up short against Porpaoin, and the early loss didnít hinder his ambitions or the great things he went on to achieve as his career progressed.

Already in his second bout Sakkreerin rebounded well, and beat hot favorite Pornchai Sithpraprom (7-1) by unanimous decision after flooring his more experienced foe in the first and second round. While his record was now only 1-1, he had already proven himself to be a very promising prospect.

After another nine victories, Sakkreerin was awarded a shot at the vacant Thai Strawweight title, relinquished by the aforementioned Chana Porpaoin, in July 1989 in Bangkok. He didnít let the opportunity go to waste, as he stopped Ded Donjadee (13-12-1) in two brutal rounds.

Les than three months later he defended his title with a ten-round decision over Kom Sorthanikul (reportedly 2-0), before staying busy with a fourth round knockout of Thaveelert Torboonlert (4-1) the following December. And after only fourteen professional fights, his handlers now felt he was ready to gatecrash the world scene.

Undefeated reigning IBF World Strawweight Champion Eric Chavez (26-0-3) was lured out of his native Philippines to defend his crown against Sakkreerin in February 1990 at the Rajadamnern Stadium in Bangkok, and the challenger rose to the occasion as he won by seventh round stoppage.

Sakkreerin retained his IBF world title seven times, beating top class challengers such as Chavez in a rematch, Pretty Boy Lucas (25-1-1), Andy Tabanas (17-0) and Felix Naranjo (13-0-2), before unexpectedly losing it to another Filipino, Manny Melchor (19-15-4), by split decision in September 1992.

The loss to Melchor, considered to be nothing more than a high-end journeyman, was something of a chock to Sakkreerin and the people backing him, but a plan to win a second world championship was quickly set in motion and it was decided that Flyweight would be the new weightclass to do it in.

With six straight victories during the course of two years, Sakkrering received the chance he had been waiting for in the form of a shot at the vacant WBF World Flyweight title. After some difficulties with opponents pulling out, he ended up fighting Bulgarian champion Krasimir Cholakov on October 22, 1994 in Bangkok, and won a wide decision.

The new WBF world champion went on to show undeniable class, defending the title in convincing fashion eight times before voluntarily relinquishing it in 1999 to move down to Light Flyweight and pursue world honors in a third weightclass.

Before that he had fended off good challengers, including Zolile Mbityi (16-2-1), who later won two world titles, and top-contenders Roger Espanola (16-8-1), Gerardo Garcia (19-4) and Vuyu Toyise (12-3-2). Unfortunately the venture to Light Flyweight didnít turn out quite as successful.

Another two years and seven victories was necessary before it was arranged that Sakkreerin would travel to the USA and face his old foe Andy Tabanas (now 40-4-1) for the vacant WBO World Light Flyweight title on a Don King-promoted show at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas on February 3, 2001.

It had been ten years since Sakkreerin beat Tabanas in a defense of the IBF title, and while it was a relatively close fight the first time it was an even closer encounter in the second go-around. After twelve rounds, one judge scored it for the Thai, one scored it for Tabanas and the third judge had it even, making the rematch a split draw.

Seven months later Sakkreerin got another chance when he challenged Nelson Dieppa (18-1-1) for the same title at the legendary Madison Square Garden in New York, as part of the HBO Pay-Per-View broadcast headlined by Bernard Hopkins vs. Felix Trinidad.

But the man from Puerto Rico had too much for Sakkreerin, who at 33 years of age was on the down-slide of an otherwise magnificent career. Dieppa controlled the fight from early on, and deservedly won a unanimous decision with scores of 118-110, 118-110 and 119-109.

But even though he had seen better days, Sakkreerin was still world class and decided to make another run at a world title. He won and defended the IBF Pan Pacific title, which eventually got him in line for a crack at the IBF world Light Flyweight championship, held by Jose Victor Burgos (36-13-3) in May 2004.

Back at the Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, and again on a major HBO card promoted by Don King, a 36-year-old Sakkreerin almost turned back the clock as he floored Burgos in the fourth round. But the tough Mexican came back strong, and ended the fight only two rounds later after scoring two knock-downs.

In May 2005 Sakkreerin traveled to Indonesia for what would be not only his last world championship fight, but his last fight, period. Amazingly he had moved back down to Strawweight to challenge IBF world titlist Muhammad Rachman (59-5-4), but the fight was declared a technical draw when a head-clash left the champion unable to continue in round three.

Fahlan Sakkreerin retired with an impressive 54-4-3 (23) record, and with 23 world championship fights on his ledger. He won nine WBF world title fights, and went 17-3-3 over-all in fights with a world title on the line. When his regional title fights are included, more than half of his 61 pro fights were for a title!

The smallest weight-classes are often overlooked, but a lot of magnificent achievements do happen in that end of the weight-scale. Fahlan Sakkreerin achieved magnificent results, was one of the best of his time, and deserves to be recognized as such.

In April 2015, Fahlan Sakkreerin Jr. (currently 29-4-1) challenged for his fathers old IBF Strawweight title, but came up short as he lost a ninth round technical decision to defending champion Katsunari Takayama in Japan. Promoted by the same man as Senior was, Jimmy Chaichotchuang, Junior (22) will likely get a new chance in the future.

  Part 26: Kenny Keene
  Part 25: Yvan Mendy
  Part 24: Ronnie Magramo
  Part 23: Randall Yonker
  Part 22: Holly Holm
  Part 21: Vinnie Curto
  Part 20: Robin Reid
  Part 19: Lionel Butler
  Part 18: Mads Larsen
  Part 17: Ken Sigurani
  Part 16: Orlando Fernandez
  Part 15: Roger Turner
  Part 14: Roy Jones Jr.
  Part 13: Fitz Vanderpool
  Part 12: Steve Roberts
  Part 11: Thulani "Sugarboy" Malinga
  Part 10: Junior Witter
  Part 9: Jimmy Thunder
  Part 8: Juan Lazcano
  Part 7: Jeff Malcolm
  Part 6: Ricky Parkey
  Part 5: Carl Daniels
  Part 4: Angel Manfredy
  Part 3: Samson Dutch Boy Gym
  Part 2: Greg Haugen
  Part 1: Johnny Nelson
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