Kickboxing matches are in every town, every night. Thais love their Muay Thai (so do I). Hearing how fascinating it was to view a live kickboxing match, no one mentioned what an eclectic group of fighters you might encounter.
Our travel guide, Mr. Louie, procured the VIP lounge for us at the Chiang Mai Boxing Stadium
First off… this is Mr. Louie. How can you not just love him!
Back to kickboxing… we go on an off night – Tuesday or Wednesday – the modern day Thai warriors we expected to see were rather quirky.
Sarama, rhythmic trance-like music, starts to play accompanying the Thai warriors as the fighters begin their pre-fight ritual making their way around the boxing ring and bowing to the audience.
You can listen to Sarama here: https://youtu.be/Ily4KzaptuE
We get to the main attraction: a tall Lithuanian looking man and short, pudgy Thai kid. Fair fight, hmmm.
These fighters throw some great kicks!
Being VIP we had the honor of placing the flower necklace around the fighter’s necks for good luck and take a group picture. As you can guess… poor Thai guy didn’t stand a chance.
Thais organize their fighters differently. Main attraction first. Everyone else after. We stayed until the very end when young fighters, maybe 12 years old, came out. It seemed weird to me at first, but if you think about how young kids in the US fight at karate matches on the weekends, it is similar to that.
Even on an off-night we had an absolute blast. Once the fighting was over we hopped back in our Tuk Tuks and made our way back to the hotel.