IFMA Becomes Sole Authority of Amateur Muay Thai

•May 31, 2010 • 15 Comments

By Mike LNg

Before I begin this article be warned:  There is commentary ahead following the news brief. If you care only about the news portion of this article stop reading once you reach the bold print.

IFMA logo

The International Federation of Muay Thai (IFMA) After much legal wrangling has been ruled the sole authority to host and select athletes in domestic and international Muay Thai amateur events. The ruling comes down from the Thai Supreme Administrative Court, May 27th, 2010. Despite much public overtures of rhetorical support from IFMA, IFMA and rival Amateur Muay Thai Association of Thailand (MAT) fought a years long battle in court to win the sole authority power of Amateur Muay Thai in Thailand. Recently, IFMA went so far as to post a press release making it sound very much like MAT happily passed over the reins without a court battle and even went as far as publishing the AMTAT logo prominently on their site with an accompanying press release describing how the IFMA now grants the AMTAT organization permission to do what they’ve always done: sanction Amateur Muay Thai events internationally.

The IFMA president Sakchaye Tapsuwan was quoted as saying the decision was a relief as the case had been in court for five years.

“We are now in charge of hosting every (amateur) Muaythai event,” said Sakchaye. He said he would now register his organisation with the National Olympic Committee of Thailand (NCOT) which previously refused to recognise the IFMA.

MAT boss Santiparb Interatat said he was surprised but accepted the ruling.

“I am still president of the Asian Muaythai Federation,” he said. “From now on, we will carry out our activities in Thailand under a new organisation called the Muaythai Association.”

The IFMA is backed by the Sports Authority of Thailand and Nat Indarapana, a member of the International Olympic Committee, while Santiparb enjoys the backing of the NOCT. In essence both organizations still have separate committees both backed by their choice in requisite powers of  the Thai government.  MAT has never dabbled in professional Muay Thai while the IFMA’s parent organization (with precisely the same staff) World Muay Thai Council (WMC) are an independent sanction for professional Muay Thai.

What follows is my offering of food for thought.

If the WMC cannot get professional Muay Thai right, why trust their sister organization IFMA with amateur Muay Thai?  Especially when it consists of the exact same executive staff responsible for the WMC’s current state of no-rankings, titles granted and revoked at will, multiple same weight world champions, blacklisting fighters and camps, and so many conflicts of interests up front that even an international boxing promoter as infamous as Don King would balk at the prospect of doing the same thing in boxing in the USA because of its outright illegal nature.

Since the inception of WMC, they have not had a coherent professional ranking to the present: well over 20 years later. The WMC have had multiple simultaneous world title holders, operated their own Muay Thai camp and have managed fighters from this camp.  All of these activities pretty thoroughly undermine the WMC’s credibility as any meaningful independent sanction to be taken seriously and in my opinion will ultimately doom any effort for Muay Thai to be ever become taken seriously as an internationally recognized amateur sport. If Muay Thai cannot govern itself in any meaningful way both in conduct, rankings or at minimum avoid blacklisting its own practioners in the interests of a promoter how can it be looked upon internationally as anything more than something of a comic impression of a real sport? How can the heads of the biggest, worst run professional combat sport organization possibly make this much headway into representing Muay Thai professionally as well?

It seems the answer is the obvious one:  Thai admiration of title and inflated official position is as great as the international love for manufactured authority and title. On the backs of many well crafted press releases and continued legal ploughing in court the IFMA has been granted official Thai backing.  The press releases and sanction money funneled through WMC’s professional front of non-ranked world title events made it possible. And Muay Thai’s professionals and fans’ deference and ignorance of and about it fueled it.

I just wonder how many people are going to be smart enough to see the difference between good hype and what is truly good for the sport. The only people that can ever change Muay Thai for the better are the people in it. Much like any true big international sport:  if unwatched sanction simply cannot be trusted. Also much like any true big international sport the strongest corrective force in the sport is its fans and practitioners.  One has to remember despite all the figureheads and shaking hands with important old men in suits any sanction only has the power fans and fighters give them. No matter which branch of government decides which sanctioning party worthy of their authority, a sanction’s worthiness is granted by the fans.

In the present day it’s not a matter of making Muay Thai get more attention.  In my opinion there are more than enough people willing and able to hype events, I do it as well. What’s lacking is professionals and participants in Muay Thai willing to make Muay Thai worthy and deserving of more attention. I’ve got a lot more to say on this topic but this should suffice as it applies to the IFMA.

Thanks for reading.

Paul “Sting” Slowinski Versus Ben “Guvnor” Edwards

•May 31, 2010 • Leave a Comment

By Mike LNg

Paul Slowinski

K-1 competitor and 4X WMC heavy weight champion Paul “The Sting” Slowinski returns to full rules Muay Thai after some time spent in K-1.  Under Alan Wong’s tutelage Slowinski return to Muay Thai against Ben Edwards in Australia at Evolution 18 from Oct 2009. Poland born Slowinski was last seen in K-1 Grand Prix Lodz in Poland.

 

Muay Thai at the EXcel Quick Results

•May 29, 2010 • Leave a Comment

by Mike LNg

Apparently Canadian fighters Misty Sutherland And Jesse Miles were not able to participate and instead substitutes were used.

MSA at the EXcel

The results I know of thus far:

Olley Watson
v
Marc Sargeant

Winner – Marc Sargeant – Points

Ruth Ashdown
v
Soraya Bucherie

winner – points – Soraya Bucherie

BRITISH TITLE

Chris Knowles
v
Glen Crosthwaite

Winner – between rounds 3 and 4 unable to continue
Chris Knowles, New British champion

Bernise Alldis
v
Anna Zuchely

Winner – New World Champion Anna Zuchely

Greg Wootton
v
Panicos Yusuf
Winner – Greg Wooton

Michael Wakeling
v
Errol Koning
Winner -Michael Wakeling – unable to contine ref stoppage
WMC INTERCONTINENTAL CHAMPION

Tim Thomas
v
Yodyut Kiatyongyut
Winner – ref stopped round 4
Tim Thomas

Jordan Watson
v
Buakaw Por Pramuk
Winner Buakaw Por Pramuk

La Nuit Des Challenges 8 Trailer Released

•May 28, 2010 • Leave a Comment

By Mike LNg

Singmanee Srisompong Sor

The official trailer of the upcoming La Nuit Des Challenges 8 has been released. The Nuit des Challenges 8 will feature some of france’s best nak muay against two big names from Thailand Singmanee Srisompong Sor and Diesellek.  Some of the boxers representing France will be Fabio Pinca, Yohan Lidon, and  Abdallah Mabel from Team Nasser-K.

Also at stake is the European title which will be decided by Karim Bennoui versus  Xavier Bastard .

Now time for the trailer.

Jean Claude Van Damme on AE Likely

•May 28, 2010 • 2 Comments

By Mike LNg

Jean Claude Van Damme

The news keeps coming about Jean Claude Van Damme’s bout coming up with Olympic gold medalist and noted Muay Thai boxer Somluck Kamsing.  Or rather the promotional activities leading up to Van Damme’s fight with Somluck, which is tentatively scheduled for broadcast October 2010. As already announced, Van Damme has cemented a deal with the United Kingdom’s I TV Network to help develop his reality TV show. The upcoming reality TV show will chronicle Hollywood blockbuster actor Van Damme’s training and preparation for the bout.

There has been some growing hype about the event with Van Damme  actively working the press circuit and appearing at the famed Cannes film festival to further hype his coming reality TV show debut. It looks like the USA has finally caught on and the America A&E network will pickup Van Damme’s reality TV series for the United States.  A&E is probably best known for bringing reality TV show star and son of Ozzy Ozbourne, Jack Osbourne to Thailand to train and ‘fight’ at Fairtex.

There’s an abundance of material for reality tv dramatics with Van Damme’s multiple marriages, history of battling addiction and with children from his 2nd wife in tow it could be a very interesting season.  Supposedly the first 6 weeks will cover Van Damme’s training up to the fight with the 2nd 7 weks covering Xomluck Kamsing’s activities leading up to the fight.

Van Damme was quoted as saying the following statements on his upcoming reality tv show:

“I’m in good shape, but it’s going to get better,” he said.

“The show is going to be all about my family,” he says. “Just like the Osbournes.”

Wow, I some how knew the invariable comparison with the Osbournes was coming. It is however starting to look like that’s the basis of the show in my opinion more so than Van Damme’s fight preparation.  Thanks for reading.

Sakaopet Sor. Srisompong versus Rachianlek Pitakputon

•May 27, 2010 • Leave a Comment

By Mike LNg

Asawindum Stadium

From Asawindum Stadium comes the main event bout of 12-20-2009. In Red: Sakaopet Sor. Srisompong – 123 lbs and in Blue: Rachianlek Pitakputon – 125 lbs.

Ultimate Thai 5 Card Matchups Completed

•May 27, 2010 • Leave a Comment

By Mike LNg

Aurelien Duarte

It looks like all the blank spaces have been filled on the Ultimate Thai card.  So no more mysteries remain about who will be fighting who and the card got even sweeter with Richard Smith of Bad Company Gym of the United Kingdom. All fights will be under full Muay Thai rules including elbows.  It’s going to be an interesting test for some of France’s best and most seasoned fighters against some of Thailand’s  international big name stars of Muay Thai.

The fight card newly revised is as follows.

Ultimate Thai 5 fighters

Fight #1 : Super Fight

Weight: -66.6 kg

Sofiane Derdega Versus Herbert Womaleu

Fight #2 : Super Fight

Weight: -66.6 kg

Raouf Beliouz Versus Ibrahim Chiahou

Fight #3 : Super Fight

Weight: -66.6 kg

Olivier Tchetche Versus Thomas Adamandopoulus

Fight #4 : Super Fight

Weight: -66.6 kg

Boubacar Konta Versus Mamadou Diabira

Fight #5 : Super Fight

Weight: -66.6 kg

Thiraphong Saengdaeng Versus Yacine Mahillon

Fight #6 : Super Fight

Weight: TBD

Aurélien Duarte Versus Kaoklai Kaenorsing

Fight #7 : Super Fight

Weight: TBD

Pascal LaFleur Versus Richard Smith

Fight #8 : Super Fight

Weight: TBD

Grégory Choplin Versus Jonathan Camara

Just a reminder that  muaythaitv.com will be carrying a streaming pay-per-view of the entire event on June 5th, 2010 for those of us not fortunate enough to view it in person.  My online pay-per-view experience is best described as ‘spotty’ but I’ll pay for it, view it and review it here no matter what the outcome is. Those of you able and willing to see it live can go to francebillet.com for ticket purchasing. Thanks for reading.

 
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