WBC ger sig in i thaiboxningsvärlden

Boxningsorganisationen WBC har blivit sanktionerad av Thailands kung att administrera thaiboxning, läs följande intervju med promotorn Mr. Songchai.


Rajadamnern Stadium Board Room

With rumors on the internet of World Boxing Council (WBC) and Muay Thai establishing a partnership, fans all over the world are discussing fact, fiction and possible future dreams of another Muay Thai organization, recognized by Thai Law. The other being the World Muay Thai Council (WMC). My path in this game, has led me to the VIP Board room of Rajadamenern Stadium, minutes before a Songchai Promotion, and a promoters meeting! Such a unique experience for me, let’s just get to the inteview. The interview format as follows: I would ask my questions to Mr. Siraphop, Songchai’s son, and he would translate to Mr. Songhcai, and his aswers were re-translated to me

I read in an article in ‘The Nation’ that the WBC President Dr. Jose Sulaiman and Sport Authority of Thailand, (SAT), Governor Dr. Tejavanija had signed an agreement. Can you give me some details about the agreement?

Thailand is ready, and everyone is excited.

So, it is official?

Yes, it is official. WBC Muay Thai has full support of our King (King of Thailand).

The WMC has stated many times that they are the world’s only recognized Muay Thai governing body, recognized under Thai law. Is it safe to say that this is no longer true, and that we have two Muay Thai governing bodies recognized by Thai law?

The WBC Muay Thai is bigger.

How much is OneSongchai Promotions involved with WBC Muay Thai?

WBC Muay Thai is a project of our King. Everyone is involved.

Do you think that the WBC Muay Thai and the WMC will have any problems between these two organizations being recognized under Thai law?

No. The two organizations can operate together.

You sent me an email with a photo of you and the legal advisor of the WBC, and you mentioned Mike Tyson training Muay Thai with Jeff Fenech. Are they currently training Muay Thai?

Yes, there is a big discussion about them training Muay Thai. Mike Tyson and Jeff Fenech are not in Thailand at the moment, though.

Do you have an idea of the first WBC Muay Thai sanctioned event?

I will be having a meeting with the SAT, and there will be an event as soon as possible.

Possibly an S1 World Championship event?

WBC Muay Thai is bigger than S1.

OneSongchai has a stable of fighters, and several of them are International boxers, including a WBC Intercontinental Champion and ABCO Champ. Would you consider having some of your International boxers cross training in Muay Thai to fight in the WBC Muay Thai?

Yes, it is possible.

Do you have any fighters in mind to fight in the WBC Muay Thai?

Currently we have six fighters that hold WMC World Titles, but we haven’t discussed who we want to fight in the WBC Muay Thai.

Are you concerned that Thailand will hold all the World Champion Titles for all the weight categories?

No, certainly not. There are many countries outside of Thailand that are very good: France, America, Japan, and China are good examples.

What do you think the biggest obstacle is for the WBC Muay Thai to get started?

I think the biggest challenge is getting it started properly the first time, here in Thailand. As long as we get it started proper here in Thailand, then other countries can follow the model. It will then be as popular as International Boxing.

Can we talk about S1 World Championships?


I remember your S1 World Championships last year on your birthday, March 04, 2004, that the nakmuays were fighting for a WMC World Title; will you continue to work with the WMC for future S1 Championships?

Yes. We are partners.

Since the S1 has started, I’ve read a lot of talk on the internet that the opening round rules with no elbows is not Muay Thai. What do you think about that criticism?

Really? I’ve never heard that before. But actually, now the rules are full Muay Thai, from the start to the finals.

WOW! That’s big news. Do you think it will cause problems for fighters to advance in the tournaments, if they win but are severely cut?

If that happens, the fighter will unfortunately be replaced in the advancement.

How do you feel about the last several S1 World Championships you and your partners have had: King’s Birthday 2004, Czech and Russian promotions for example?

They have been a success, very good and the turn out has been quite well.

Fighting is a business for everyone: the fighters, promoters, gym owners, and sponsors. How do you choose your fighters, and what percentage do you look for talent and what percentage for marketability?

It is both, but first and foremost they must be skilled.

You sent me an email about the S1 World Championship format. I have received several comments about having a K1 style format, where there are qualifiers all over the world, and then a Grand Prix at the end, to find a true World Champ.

Actually, Master Ishii came to speak with me about promoting, 5yrs before the K1. This was about 20yrs ago. He was a gym manager at the time, and he did not want to promote. He asked me for advice.

Are you business associates?

Yes, and we are friends.

Do you think S1 will follow a K1 style or have its own style?

K1 actually reflects the S1 concept format. It is the best format.

The S1 World Championships is a 72kgs tournament. There are a lot of fighters at that weight, and there are several promotions out there at that weight as well: K1 MAX, Super League, Shootboxing etc. What do you think about having a lower weight division tournament, maybe 65kgs?

We will have one.

Who would you say are your top international partners of the S1 World Championships?

All our partners, we value equally.

What countries are you currently working with?

We’ve had 2 Czech, 1 in Russia, and future S1 Events in Japan, Brazil and Portugal.

Would you care to thank anyone?

Thank you to the WBC Muay Thai and their involvement in the sport of Muay Thai. We want to show that Muay Thai is a very valid form of self defense. Thank you to the fans of Muay Thai

Thank you very much for your time, Mr. Songchai and Mr. Siraphop.

And with that, I left the Promoter’s Board room, so they could have their meeting. Mr. Siraphop and I had a lengthy conversation, over some cold drinks and BBQ pork on a stick w/ sticky rice. We discussed life and Muay Thai.

It turns out that Mr. Siraphop is an Alumni of Arizona State University, just like me, and we both majored in Finance. Go Sun Devils!

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