Harrogate-based Thai boxer Kris Addis put in the performance of a lifetime on Saturday to win the World Muay Thai Federation’s European Light Middleweight Belt.
He defeated French champion Mike Schmidt with a dominant display, using his favourite knee-strikes to put the Frenchman on the back foot and keep him there.
Speaking after the fight, he said: “I have been working towards this goal for three years and it feels great to finally get there.”
Both fighters weighed in under the 71.575kg limit and it was clear that they were both in excellent shape for the fight, which was sponsored by health snack company Naked Ape and took place at The Pavilions of Harrogate, on the Great Yorkshire Showground.
Schmidt is known for his good kicks and excellent elbow-attacks, and the first round began quickly, with Schmidt sending some heavy low kicks and a few stinging mid-section roundhouses.
Addis, renowned for his strength and pressure, replied with his own punch and kick attacks but then got into his favourite clinch position, from where he sent in some heavy knee-strikes, taking the round.
The pace did not slow in the second, with Schmidt continually hitting Addis’s leg, and then throwing some venomous elbow-strikes, but Addis pushed forward and again took the round.
Schmidt looked to be struggling with Addis’s strength but was still dangerous and damaged Addis’s leg further in round three, but it still wasn’t enough to win the round.
The Frenchman needed to win one and duly took the fourth, having landed a heavy blow to Addis’s leg, making him limp.
Schmidt still needed the last round to make it close, but Addis, fired up by his corner, attacked relentlessly in the final stanza and was confident he had won after the final bell.
The judges unanimously scored the bout to Addis, who was ecstatic at the victory.