Boxing champion joins Thailand’s Palang Pracharath Party in Khon Kaen

Somrak Khamsing, photo by Somrak Khamsing Facebook.

A big name in Thailand’s boxing scene has now joined Thailand’s Palang Pracharath Party, and will represent the next election in Constituency 10 of the Khon Kaen province. The boxer, 49 year old Somrak Khamsing, won a gold medal in the US in 1996. After he retired from boxing, he became an actor. He then moved into politics.

The Palang Pracharath Party heads up the tenuous coalition of conservative parties which formed government following the March 2019 general election.

The PPRP has not set a target of how many seats it expects to win in Thailand’s north, but hopes to be successful in this region. In Thailand’s northeast, where Somrak is running, it’s expected there will be heated competition between the PPRP, and Thailand’s Pheu Thai party. Pheu Thai is one of the country’s opposition party. PPRP deputy party leader Chaiwut Thanakamanusorn said he believes PPRP’s policies will win the support of people in the Northeast and other regions.

Thailand’s north east has generally supported progressive parties and was the region that provided so many votes for the Thaksin and Yingluck Shinawatra governments in the past.

Somrak grew up in Khon Kaen, and started training in Muay Thai when he was 7 years old. After fighting about 300 matches, Somrak has reportedly only ever lost 12. In his acting career, Somrak played a boxing trainer at a Muay Thai camp in a prison in the 2017 action flick A Prayer Before Dawn. The story centres on a British man who ends up in a Thai prison, and starts training for a Muay Thai tournament there.

Somrak has starred in other action films as well, including Bangkok Revenge in 2011, about a young boy raised by a martial arts instructor who grooms him to be a lethal killer. Somrak was a sport ambassador for the 2013 World Combat Games.

SOURCE: Thai PBS World | Muay Thai Citizen | Bangkok Post | International Federation of Muay Thai Associations | IMDB

Northern Thailand News

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Tara Abhasakun

A Thai-American dual citizen, Tara has reported news and spoken on a number of human rights and cultural news issues in Thailand. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in history from The College of Wooster. She interned at Southeast Asia Globe, and has written for a number of outlets. Tara reports on a range of Thailand news issues.