Wednesday the 7th February saw the annual Muaythai day celebrations, this year at the Sports Authority of Thailand. The event began with a dramatic opening ceremony featuring traditional dance and a Muay Boran performance.
The first fight of the evening was an amateur youth bout at 37.28kg between Sangla Numbangkradee from Thailand and Insayad Bin Rumijan from Malaysia. Both young athletes went at it from the first bell showing courage and determination and showcasing amazing talent. After 3 rounds the judges declared the fight a draw. An epic performance from these two young athletes.
The second fight of the evening was the first fight in the Super 4 57 kg category with Numpet Por Pramuk from Thailand facing Nguyen Tang Quyen from Vietnam. At one point it looked like the Vietnamese athlete was going to take the win after landing some heavy shots but the Thai athlete was not going to lose on his home turf and made an amazing comeback securing the victory and going through to the next round.
The third fight and second fight of the 57kg saw Khalilov Tagir from Russia go to head with Mohd Ali Bin Yaakub from Malaysia. This was a much anticipated fight as the pair fought each other last year in a very close match. This year was also a very close match also with Ali Bin just edging the win and going in to the final.
The fourth fight and the first fight in the Super 4 67kg saw Brazilain Jorge Inacio vs Willy Whipple from the USA. Both athletes here displayed all of the weapons of the eight limbs with the Brazilian going through to the next round.
The fifth fight and second fight in the 67kg tournament featured Petch Muangpen Sirilak Muaythai from Thailand face Batjargal RTT from Mongolia. It was the Thai who was victorious when the final bell rang entering the final.
The sixth fight and first fight in the 72kg division saw Ziyodilla Kurbanov (Uzbekistan) and Dylan Thanh (France) battle out for a place in the final. Dylan put on a great performance showcasing his evasive style but Ziyodilla persisted forward outscoring the French man and taking the victory.
The seventh night of the evening and second fight in the 72kg tournament saw local boy Drogba Sirilak Muaythai go up against Alex De Sousa from Brazil. The Brazilian showed great heart but the Thai outfoxed his opponent, securing his place in the final.
The eight fight on the card saw a female fight for the UNESCO cup between Fah Yokkao- Saenchai gym from Thailand and Huynh Huu Hie from Vietnam. Fah put on a great performance but was outscored by the Vietnamese athlete who had an answer for everything and went home victorious.
The ninth fight of the evening was for the 66.67kg WMC World title between Thanuchai Puicharleephate (Thailand) and Bryan Matias (France). This was deemed by many as fight of the evening and had the fans on the edge of the seat. At one point the French man was in the lead but the Thai quickly changed up his style following the second round and using clever footwork was able to pop off shots from a safe distance and became the new world champion.
Fight 10, the final of the 57kg Super 4 tournament between Mohd Ali Bin Yaakub from Malaysia and Numpet Por Pramuk from Thailand saw Numphet come out strong from the first bell but quickly realised Ali Bin is no spring chicken in the game so had to be cautious after getting tagged a couple of times by the man from Thailand. After 3 rounds it was Numpet who got the win.
Fight 11, The final of the 67kg Super 4 saw Petch Muangpen Sirilak Muaythai from Thailand and Jorge Inacio from Brazil battle it out to see who could win the Super 4 cup. This was an intensely technical match and could have gone either way at points but in the end it was Petch who took the judges decision.
The final match of the evening and final of the 72kg tournament saw Ziyodilla Kurbanov face Drogba Sirilak Muaythai for the champion spot. During the first round Ziyodilla managed to jump ahead but Drogba refusing to step down made an amazing comeback, winning the tournament.
From all at the WMC we would like to thank the athletes for putting on such an amazing display of skill and remember there are no losers in our sport.