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Sylvie von Duuglas-Ittu

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Everything posted by Sylvie von Duuglas-Ittu

  1. Last week (or so) a video went "viral" on Thai social media. It was a scrappy street fight between a young kathoey (generally used for male to female Trans, but less frequently used also for female to male) protecting herself from a local, cis male bully. Nong Ping is the young Trans woman and in the video, shot by a bystander on their phone, and she absolutely goes to town on this bully. In the end the bully is standing, panting, tired, and nose dripping from his nose. After this video got so widely shared, Nong Toom - "The Beautiful Boxer," and the most famous kathoey celebrity and former Muay Thai fighter - took Nong Ping in under her wing. Nong Toom has had the young woman staying with her and has begun training her in Muay Thai, saying she already has heart and now just has to learn the skill. Nong Toom even accompanied Nong Ping on a TV show that is more or less a platform for guests to air out their grievances and settle disputes (Sia Boat and his fighter who has been charged with throwing a fight for money appeared on the show a month or so back). Nong Ping and her bully appeared on the show with the host, and Nong Toom at the table as well to educate this bully and the public. Here are some photos of Nong Ping. The first is a screenshot from the street fight, the remainder are those posted by Nong Toom as Nong Ping is a guest in her house. Nong Toom says she believes Nong Ping will have the opportunity to have a professional fight after she's been training for a bit. (As per Thailand's laws, Nong Ping will face either a cis male or another kathoey.) For the latest Thailand Muay Thai News Updates check out our Muay Thai Bones Newsletter
  2. I saw an announcement on their FB page that they are re-opening to the public, but only for private sessions. Their trainers have a lot of experience working with all different kinds of fighters, so probably they're good trainers. But as of this moment they don't allow access to training with their stable of fighters.
  3. Every injury is different, but a big part of my approach has been warm water massage, especially for shins, and to not use rest too much. Instead, active recovery: You can also read this article I wrote a few years ago, which details my injuries and some of how I responded to them: Large and Small – The Injuries and Ailments I’ve Had Fighting in Thailand
  4. I'd look into Yodwicha's gym in Bangkok. He's fighting in Paris on Dec. 5th, but if he doesn't have any seminars lined up for after he should be back at the gym by the time you arrive. Contact his wife through their gym page to make sure he'd be there first; it's not the same experience when he's not there (still good, but for you I'd recommend going when he's there.) https://web.facebook.com/Yodwicha-gym-ยอดวิชายิม-109758933730799
  5. It was just announced that, starting January 8th of next year, Lumpinee will start promoting an afternoon show that is only children. There will be 4 bouts per card, starting at 1:30 PM. Children have been permitted to fight at Lumpinee for a long time, but there has always been a weight limit (and ostensibly an age limit, but I'm not sure what that was; the weight limit kind of takes care of the age limit at the same time) of 100 lbs. As it's been told to me by Legends and older fighters who entered Lumpinee at that 100 lbs minimum, it's a bit of a forgiving line and fighters sometimes had to eat and drink in order to try to hit 100 lbs, rather than anyone dropping down to it. This new show is lowering the weight limit to 80 lbs, which will allow younger fighters or will at least acknowledge what weight some of those fighters are actually at when they come to the stadium. The intention of the show is to give access and opportunity to dao rung or "rising stars" as they are called in Thai. It's unclear from the announcement who will be the promoter for this particular program, but it's in line with something that Sia Boat of Petchyindee had initiated and invested in for his own promotions prior to the most recent shutdowns from Covid. It is unlikely that this will include girls; but we'll see. Of note is that the graphic used for this announcement are two young fighters Jojo (red) and Yodpetaek (blue), two top young fighters are 12 and 13 years old, who recently fought to a draw on a high profile fight. Neither of these two fighters meet the weight requirement at 80 lbs. For the latest Thailand Muay Thai News Updates check out our Muay Thai Bones Newsletter
  6. I agree with Kevin on this, spending some time at a place gives a deeper experience than making it a day-trip. Manop is a great option based on the age of your son. I can't comment on the advantages of gyms based on their locations and proximity to tourist attractions as that's not something we do when we visit gyms, but Chiang Mai in general is easy to navigate and has lots of things to explore. Bangkok is harder to move around in, but also lots to do it you take half a day or a day off.
  7. Fairtex has announced it will begin promoting at Lumpinee Stadium, starting in January, including MMA shows. So... that's happening. They also explicitly state "all genders," making them the second promotion to include women at the stadium (currently GoSport is the only promotion including women there). A Muay Thai Reaction As for how the New New Lumpinee, with its focus on omitting gambling and including very different promotions, one reaction from Thai fans is expressed in this post from a popular Thai Language news page. It says: Lumpinee will accept 3 rounds, 5 rounds, 6 rounds, female fighters, MMA, concerts - everything but gambling. (I assume the 6 round fights are boxing.)
  8. When Lumpinee Stadium moved from its old location in Bangkok to its new location in Ram Intra, it became known as "New Lumpinee." They gave it a whole makeover, creating a modernized (at that time) experience with LED screens, fold-down seats in the ticketed seating areas (gamblers still have bench-like stadium seating; they pay also, but their tickets are very cheap), and a kind of peripheral inclusion of a massage shop, equipment and apparel stores... a more "high end" Lumpinee from its roots. Now that Covid has created a chain-reaction of changes to Lumpinee, including who is running it and a complete change of guard in who is promoting there, the New Lumpinee is quickly becoming the "New New Lumpinee." Part of that change is the inclusion of women fighting on the GoSport promotion, something that is a truly huge change, paired with the exclusion of gambling. The two main players in New New Lumpinee are "Big Dang," the military officer who is in charge of the venue itself. Beside him (and just under him in terms of power) is Mr. Chai, who is the head of GoSport, the new main promotional operator within the stadium. You can hear Kevin and me talk about the complex realities of having a "outsider" running the main operations for promoting, the pros and cons therein, in our latest Muay Thai Bones episode. This stub article is about Big Dang and Mr. Chai's plans for the ongoing development of New New Lumpinee. Essentially, Big Dang's main concern is severing gambling from Muay Thai. He says that they want to switch focus from the gambling-driven audience of contemporary Muay Thai to, what he's calling here, a "traditional scoring" focus. He doesn't give any kind of explanation for what he views as traditional, but he is emphasizing a focus on transparency and fairness in refereeing and judging, while simultaneously saying he wants "traditional" scoring and not some kind of new "international" appeal... which is good, in my view, as long as there is a clear idea of what he's talking about. He also says he is asking Mr. Chai, the head of GoSport, to put on one big card per month. Currently there are shows every weekend, so there are still 4 shows per month, but Big Dang appears to be asking for a kind of big draw promotion with titles, big names, something that gets viewers excited to watch the fights. There are still no audience permitted to watch any of these shows, so I don't know whether he's anticipating when they will be welcomed in again (with no gambling), or whether he means a show that will be widely watched online.
  9. As a bit of background, Muay Thai promotions are going on in Thailand but they are very limited. The Bangkok promoters, namely Petchyindee and Giatpetch, are having their biggest shows in Buriram (Isaan) as Bangkok was until recently completely shut down. Entertainment promotions like Muay Hardcore and Superchamp (what Sylvie calls "Channel 8" if you listen to our Muay Thai Bones podcast) relocated from a Bangkok night market to Phuket right around the time Thailand implemented the "Phuket Sandbox" as a soft reopening to international tourism. Num Nui is the head of the Singpatong Gym on Phuket, as well as the promoter at the Patong Stadium (one of two major stadia on Phuket), and currently hosts the Channel 8 shows in his stadium. He also appears to be the head of this new coalition to unify and coordinate on Phuket. I jokingly called him the "Sia Boat of the South" to Kevin this morning (Sia Boat is the head of Petchyindee Gym, a legacy to one of the biggest promoters from the Golden Age, and more or less the self-appointed ambassador for Muay Thai right now). So all that is to say that Phuket is a bit of a hot-spot for Muay Thai right now, as it has permissions that most other parts of Thailand do not (due to the Sandbox) and is hosting weekly shows that are widely viewed around the world. Yesterday there was a meeting on Phuket between a huge number of gyms, mostly a hybrid of Muay Thai tourism and fighter gym, meaning their main business is not producing fighters but they do, in fact, have some fighters. It's interesting that part of this meeting was to encourage gyms to work together and even establish standards (both in training, hiring of trainers, fees, etc) among gyms to - it's not stated but I imagine the only inference - mitigate competition between them. Gyms on Phuket are hugely competitive with one another, from poaching trainers to competing for customers. So, it's a big ask to have them start coordinating. So yesterday there was this big meeting with all these Phuket gyms in attendance: Venum, Sinbi, Powerhouse, Phuket Fight Club, Singpatong, Sit Muatwian, Oleydong, Eagle Muay Thai, Sutai, Rawai, Phuketsing, Lamai, Phanna, Tiger, Maximum, Koh Muay Thai, Chalamkhao, Nawa, Suragit, Big Ben, Jay Power Roof, Revolution (formerly Sitsongpeenong), Petch P.T.O, and Phuket Top Team. The meeting notes are as follows: 1) Discussion of promoting Hardcore and Superchamp ("Entertainment") as well as 5 round Muay Thai "online" (no audience is yet allowed). 2) Working to benefit boxers for working together, including awarding camps "bonus money" every 3 months as incentive to produce televised fighters, winning fights, etc. 3) Num Nui (head of Singpatong Gym and Patong Boxing Stadium) affirmed his experience in both promoting Muay Thai shows as well as producing fighters (he is responsible for western stars like Damian Alamos, Rafi Bohic, and recently Mathias). He encouraged everyone to work together under the aim of producing "fun" fights (this word in Thai means fun to watch, exciting, entertaining, etc) and told everyone that if he makes any mistakes he encourages anyone and everyone to come talk to him. He assured everyone that this committee is not exclusive in the sense that fighters have to notify any head of the group if they have a promotion elsewhere (this is a common practice among promotions, to more or less "own" their fighters against competing promotions, without actually signing any kind of contract). He also said everyone can relax as the aim of the new promotion of shows is without gambling. 4) If any member of this group of gyms feels that referees are acting/ruling unfairly or disagree with judging, they are welcome to approach the committee, 5) They intend to make a referee/judge's focus on striking as the main factor in scoring, as well as a "diligent" fighter (meaning they don't give up, pedal backwards, hesitate or become lazy if they have the lead). Interestingly, in their point about fights being "fun" and entertaining to watch, they distinctly make the point that folks who do not know "how to watch Muay Thai" (meaning they aren't familiar with scoring or the sport's nuances) should still find the fights fun to watch. The audience should feel comfortable and "not stressed" in watching the fight. This resembles the new Entertainment Muay Thai scoring aesthetic which typifies 3 round fights. 6) A secondary emphasis on gyms not having to notify the committee if their fighters have fights on other shows; again saying anyone is free to come talk about anything, any time. 7) Num Nui makes an interesting point here that I recently noted in something Karuhat said to me, he distinguishes a difference between a kaimuay (Muay Thai camp) and a gym. The former produces fighters as their main focus, the latter is a business and has "international benefits." He states, however, that this committee is aimed at building both fighters and gyms. He says that when a gym produces good fighters, who fight on TV in "fun to watch" bouts, it will promote international business coming to the camp "automatically." He says this is a way to promote and improve Muay Thai, to advertise internationally through televised Muay Thai, both "entertainment" and 5 round shows. This meeting was held on November 14, 2021. These sorts of unifying meetings are happening at this time, coverage of a scoring unification meeting: If you want the latest in Muay Thai happenings and things to inspire: sign up for our Muay Thai Bones Newsletter
  10. Listen to this episode on Spotify here This is a podcast I have listened to for a long time. They've recently changed their format for the "live interpretations" to only have the English (it used to be an English translation over the monk actually speaking, so you could hear his teaching at a lower level, which I preferred; but it's still an incredibly helpful service, nonetheless), this one is about how the monk came to understand "correct practice." I have been practicing Vipassana meditation for a number of years now and have gone on a couple 3-day retreats, which have served me immensely in both my mind and in understanding how that practice pertains to Muay Thai. This podcast episode really struck me because of how the monk talks about the natural states of the mind needing to be observed for "correct practice." Many mistakenly believe that the mind wandering, creating images, or getting distracted is wrong or a lack of concentration, but for the purposes of becoming the "knower" and observing the mind as it is, you have to observe it in these natural states. Bring it back, don't let it wander off, but don't control it. This is directly related to the principles of "Self One and Self Two" in the Inner Game of Tennis (my #1 recommended reading source) for how natural learning takes place. Mistakes have to occur; be wrong, be right, know it and keep going. Don't judge it, "know it," and keep going. My blog post on my first Vipassana retreat a few years ago, I'll post other resources further down.
  11. If you don't know who Chatchainoi is, you can get to know him in our recent Muay Thai Library session: Watch that here as a patron Kevin also did a photo essay on our session with Chatchainoi: you can view that photo essay here
  12. There has been repeated criticism, for years really, about the outcome of fights in the main stadia of Bangkok: Lumpinee, Rajadamnern, Omoi, and Channel 7. Everything is usually brought into shorthand as being sullied by "gambling" and those betting on fights having too much influence over the wins and losses. Sometimes it is pretty blatant; sometimes I don't see why there's an argument, other than maybe from people who lost money themselves. That argument isn't particularly interesting in that it will always be present, always has been present, and isn't particularly fixable. What is interesting is that there are a few strings that attach to this criticism that make it "modern" rather than just the same old squeak on the same old wheel. Firstly, gambling is under serious attack ever since the first wave of Covid in March of last year. You can hear me and Kevin discuss this a bit in our newest Muay Thai Bones episode, but the first big "cluster" of Covid in Thailand stemmed from an event at Lumpinee and was blamed on gamblers. As a result, as Thailand has employed shutdowns and soft re-openings to deal with the pandemic, Muay Thai has been hard-hit by the restrictions and the start-and-stop approach to promotions has made promoters very sensitive, very eager to obey rules and regulations, and Lumpinee's head "Big Dang," has gone hard after the aim of eliminating gambling from Muay Thai shows at all. More established promotions like Petchyindee, Giatpetch, Chefboontham, Omnoi and Channel 7 have not aligned their voices to this aim of eliminating gambling, but they have enforced rules at their promotions (most of which are taking place outside of Bangkok, whereas normally they all would be within Bangkok) which limit the number of audience members permitted to attend the live shows. This is meant to be a measure to reduce public contact, but it's also painted as a means to control gambling as well. (The audience is mainly comprised of gamblers, anywhere.) This is a piece of news in the form of an announcement from Sia Boat, the head of Petchyindee Academy and co-head of the Petchyindee promotions (his father made the name as one of the major promoters in the Golden Age and is probably the biggest promotion now, alongside Giatpetch, who also goes back to the Golden Age but at Channel 7, not Lumpinee and Rajadamnern). Sia Boat basically took the helm when Covid locked down Muay Thai last year. He is very famous, his family is very wealthy, and as legacy promoters he has a lot of authority beyond his age (early 30s). He acts as an ambassador between the "Muay Thai community," which is gyms, fighters, promoters... everyone who makes Muay Thai actually happen... and the Sport Authority of Thailand, which is government power making decisions but not necessarily making any of the wheels actually turn. Sia Boat proposed that a way to solve the criticisms of corruption in Muay Thai is to codify and make uniform scoring and refereeing across all stadia. This is something that Muay Thai fans outside of Thailand may not be aware of, that there are codified rules - like no plowing, what's a foul, the rule that a referee who suspects a fight is being thrown can stop a fight on those grounds and send both fighters out of the ring, etc. A recent discussion is about referees stopping a fight if the fighters are not engaging enough in rounds 1-4, for example, which has recently gone into effect. But the scoring between stadia is recognized and known among Thai fighters, gyms, trainers, cornermen, etc. And it's been this way for a long time. It's not written out, it's just tendencies because referees and judges don't tend to cross between the main venues, just like fighters didn't cross between promoters in the Golden Age, or very much now. Arjan Surat once explained to me and Kevin that Rajadamnern favored fighters who demonstrate technique, whereas Lumpinee favors fighters who "dern" or are more forward in their fights. So, a fighter like Silapathai would do great at Rajadamnern and maybe struggle a bit in Lumpinee, against the same opponent and fighting the exact same way, simply due to how those judges and referees look at a fight. In this recent rule change about fighters being warned and then thrown out of the ring if they don't engage, the venue most affected by this standardization of governing fights mostly affects Channel 7. There were meetings held about whether they need to fire all their officials, referees and judges in order to elimitate corrupt players, but ultimately this "engagement" rule has thrown that possibility into the future. Sia Boat's proposal to the Sport Authority of Thailand has been accepted by the head of that committee, although what it will entail remains to be announced and or seen. Personally, I think it's a dubious card on the table. If they make their standards in line with the Muay Thai that's fun to watch, in line with traditional practices and scoring, maintaining "Thai" Muay Thai, it's great. If they standardize it more toward the "international" and "entertainment" models, it's terrible. If you want the latest in Muay Thai happenings and things to inspire: sign up for our Muay Thai Bones Newsletter
  13. I follow a number of Thai language news sources, collections of old photos and programs, etc. Many interesting things come out of these resources, but every now and again I'm shocked by what I find. Recently, I saw a post about a fighter who had been very successful in Muay Thai but suffered an accident with a gun misfiring, leading to an injury which made it so he could not fight anymore. He'd always been heavy-handed as a fighter, so he decide to try Western Boxing (I guess the injury was such that this was still possible, but Muay Thai was not) and became WBC Asian champion, as well as currently standing as ranked #12 for 122 lb WBC World title. That's obviously amazing and I shared it with Kevin. His face even seemed familiar to me but not like I knew him from somewhere, just seemed like he looked like someone I do know. I kept digging to see what kind of Muay Thai career he'd had. Sources said he had over 200 fights, which means he grew up in the sport. As a Boxer, he fights under his legal name, which most Muay Thai fighters do not, but eventually I happened upon his Muay Thai name: Petchatchai.... I know that name; and now I know that face. "Holy shit," I said to Kevin, "it would be absolutely crazy but this might be Chatchainoi's son." More digging... there's a photo. We recently added Chatchainoi to the Muay Thai Library. He is nicknamed the "Man of Stone" in Thai, and his son, as a boxer, carries the name "Rock Man," in phonetic Thai to be said like the English. Chatchainoi leaves absolutely no question to how he got this nickname; he's hard as a fighter, relentless, small and compact but brave and imposing. He comes from the "first class" of Dejrat fighters, under the tutelage of Arjan Surat, who is himself a very hard man and demands toughness like very few trainers still do today. It makes total sense that Chatchainoi's son would be this invincible. He actually has two sons, the younger is called Chatchainoi also and is gearing up for a boxing fight himself. I'd seen him training at Dejrat before. Like his father and brother, he is just hard. Here is a highlight of 11 KO finishes by "Rock Man" Chainoi Worawut aka Petchatchai: And Chatchainoi the Jr, fights with his father's same fight name: Chatchainoi Chaoraioi If you want the latest in Muay Thai happenings and things to inspire: sign up for our Muay Thai Bones Newsletter
  14. Below is my paraphrase of some Facebook talk between ex-fighters and legends of the Hapalang gym, the famed gym of the Golden Age which produced 3 FOTYs in Dieselnoi, Chamuakphet and Panomtuanlek. The gym's manager was murdered at Lumpinee between rounds, during Chaumuakphet and Langsuan. This is the posted photo that gave them to talk about it. Dieselnoi on the Hapalang photo, paraphrased: ...time flies by so quickly. Looking at this photo and thinking of all the boxers there every day, different weights, packed from earth to the sky. It didn't matter fight purse or training for a fight, we had parents back home in different provinces, but we could never go visit, even if they were ill. "What are you, a doctor? Are you going to heal them?" You'd only get short answers as news, barely knowing whether they had recovered yet. Two more comments relay that fighters ran away from the camp within 2 or 3 years due to not having money, or being worked so hard in training and fights without benefit. One remarks how he was there at the time that Sia Nao sold the gym to pay a gambling debt and then was killed not long after. Panomtuanlek comments briefly to Dieselnoi's comment, "Yes, I don't even know how to describe how it was."
  15. see the highlights here I've known Poda (his play name), now fighting under the name Sirichai Klong Suan Plu Resort, since he was just a little teenager. He was from a small gym in Chiang Mai and he's ethnically Hill Tribe, a minority in Northern Thailand, which makes his success a pretty big deal. He would come to the gym I trained at, Lanna Muay Thai, to clinch with our Thai fighters prior to his fights in Bangkok. He was so disciplined that his trainer, Oley, would just tell him to do x number of knees on the bag and then he'd leave, knowing Poda would do it. I remember my trainer at the time Den, watching him and saying, "I want a gym of my own but I need boys like this. Hard working." At that time, Poda was sold to a gym in Siracha, down below Bangkok, and he changed his fight name to Tanadet Tor. Pran49, which is how he's called in the Muay Thai Library, teaching his unique Long Clinch technique. He fought a lot for that gym and they tried to change him quite a bit, to varied and diminishing success. Eventually he left the gym without his contract expiring and he's been teaching up in Chiang Mai for the past few years. Only a bit more than a month ago he moved down to Singburi to train under Kru Diesel (formerly at FA Group), a true Muay Khao builder, which I was very excited about because Poda is a thousand percent Muay Khao and a lot of the difficulties he faced in his career path seemed, to me, to be due to his gym trying to alter him from that gift. After only a little more than a month in Singburi, training Muay Khao for the first time in years (this is hard work) he's back in the ring for the first time in 3 years. I was more nervous for this fight than I am for most of my own, Kevin and I both shouting for him to lock. It was a spectacular reintroduction in to the ring, noted by everyone with eyes. Sia Boat, head of Petchyindee Academy and promotion (meaning this promotion, as well as the gym from which the opponent hails), came in after the fight to congratulate Poda and in this clip (watch it below) exclaims how impressive it is to fight like that after 3 years off, as well as telling the interviewer he has no desire to experience his lock for himself. Kru Diesel is also beaming, when asked how he feels he says he's proud, but that he doesn't take full credit because Poda is so diligent and hard working, so he's easy to teach. Watch Sia Boat congratulating Kru Diesel and Sirichai Next up for Sirichai (Poda) is said to be Praew Praew, also a Petchyindee fighter who is a serious challenge for anyone standing in front of him. They're just throwing him right back into it! I'm just stoked to be seeing him back in the ring after all this time. I'm a huge fan of him both as a person and as a fighter and I think under Kru Diesel he really has an opportunity to launch along a path that's suited to his strengths, rather than trying to roll the extraordinary out of him for the sake of a smoother kind of ordinary. If you want the latest in Muay Thai happenings sign up for our Muay Thai Bones Newsletter
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  17. This is Chalamkaw, once a fighter at Udom Chalee's gym, who very famously threw a fight for him years ago. Yodkhunpon told me today that he was not fined or jailed, but his subsequent car accident and paralysis was viewed as a karmic consequence of lohm muay, by the Muay Thai community.
  18. This is a further update on this story, summing up what I've gotten from Thai news: Sia Boat has proceeded in bringing charges against Fahwanmai (the fighter) and Udom Chalee (who paid for the thrown fight), which according to Thai law carries a prison sentence of no more than 5 years, and/or a fine of no more than 100,000 Baht (around $3000). Fahwanmai has given an account of how contact was first made with him (it's unclear, but sounds like there was a middle-man in this deal) by a man purchasing a food item that Fahwanmai sells and ships. The man purchased 2400 Baht worth of the food item and overpaid for it with a total of 5000 Baht. On his next order, he said not to waste money packaging and sending the goods, he'd come pick them up himself from Fahwanmai. They spoke on that day when he visited his home, casually, the man asking about any upcoming fights and how Fahwanmai's training was going. He didn't mention any deal at this point. Sometime after this, he contacted Fahwanmai again and told him it would be "better if you couldn't win" in his upcoming fight against Lahnyamo, suggesting he fight for real for 3 rounds and then go down in the 4th, which is exactly as it happened. According to Fahwanmai's testimony, the contact said he'd pay 30,000 Baht upfront (which he transferred on the day of the fight) and the remaining 470,000 Baht after. If Fahwanmai decided not to accept the deal it was "mai bpen rai," (no problem) but he couldn't tell anyone about the offer, carrying with it a threat that he knows where Fahwanmai lives, since he'd just come by to pick up the order of condiments he'd purchased in their second meeting. So, initially Fahwanmai had said he took the deal under threat of physical attack and not for the money, but in his testimony here he's claiming the threat of bodily hard was not for not taking the offer, but if he told anyone about it. After giving his testimony he begged Sia Boat to not send him to prison because he wants to work to take care of his mother and grandmother, and even asked for a now third chance to fight for Sia Boat again. Comments online have been making fun of this request, some quite harshly. Dieselnoi joked that if Sia Boat were to give Fahwanmai another chance he'd do well to change his fight name to "ai dek hia" which is a pretty rude way of saying "Little Bastard." The case is ongoing and Sia Boat has made no official statements other than that he is pressing forward with the charges and his interests are in protecting the Muay Thai Community from anyone who seeks to do it harm. above, Fahwanmai giving his story of events above, This photo is a television interview with both Fahwanmai and Sia Boat. Fahwanmai is asking for forgiveness and to not go to jail. Sia Boat said that prison is his karma for the choices he made and for the matter of fighting again, it would be a very difficult ask for anyone to trust him again. He has admitted to throwing 4 fights in his career as a fighter, fighting since he was a boy.
  19. You can see the phantom "knockout" elbow here Just a quick synopsis of the "Lohm Muay" story, from what I picked up watching the story in Thai. Fahwanmai, whose name means "sky of a new day" was taken under Sia Boat's wing after he great deal of money gambling on a fight that Sangmanee lost. Sia Boat paid off the debt and took Fahwanmai in (named him as well) to the very powerful Petchyindee gym where he has become an internet celebrity and fighter since. He's fought maybe 4-5 times for Petchyindee and most recently against Lahnyamo Wor. Wattana in a televised show in Buriram. Fahwanmai was winning rounds 1-3 and then suddenly going into round 4 the odds suddenly shifted to favor Lahnyamo (5/2). Then in that round it looked like Fahwanmai suddenly couldn't handle his opponent and he was knocked out by an elbow, leaving him writhing on the canvas. Slow motion replay showed the elbow barely grazed him and the cries of a thrown fight were immediately circulating online. There is video of Sia Boat calling on the phone and Fahwanmai backstage swearing he didn't throw the fight. By the next day he had written a confession and named both who hired him and the price (500,000 baht with 30,000 of it up front). Sia Boat then went live for an hour on Facebook and detailed the situation (with more than 20,000 viewers), as well as naming the culprit as Udom Chalee (pictured below), the former head of a gym who 25 years ago paid a fighter named Chalamkaw to throw a fight, ruining his career as a fighter in a very famous case. Now Chalee owns and runs a buffalo farm in Nakhon Naiyok. Sia Boat intends to prosecute both Udom Chalee and Fahwanmai with a hoped result of jail time for both. He has also divulged that another fighter on a recent card was offered to take a dive but refused, told Sia Boat, won his fight and Sia boat has given the gambler the option to turn himself in for a light punishment or else if he doesn't come forward Sia Boat intends to prosecute him fully as well. Gambling in Muay Thai is at the forefront of "politics" at the moment and, while circumstantially legal, in a Buddhistic culture it is a morally loaded topic. above: Sia Boat Petchyindee, Fahwanmai and Udom Chalee previously If you want the latest in Muay Thai happenings read our Muay Thai Bones Newsletter
  20. In my experience, strikes are more powerful when they're relaxed and not "trying to be hard." Trying to control power usually tenses up the limbs and makes you both less able to control them and too slow and too light. Loose, relaxed and still fast but controlling the impact. "Letting your strikes go," is almost always a trying less "hard" and being relaxed.
  21. This could be something to ask directly to the gym, as they have members who live on premises as well as some who are farther away. But most places have small markets nearby, regardless of where you are. If you're near a Wat (Temple) there's certainly a night market or morning market nearby. In general, Chiang Mai is a very easy city to get around, either by motorbike, bicycle, or public transportation (although I'm not sure how that's getting on with Covid).
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