Connect with us


MMA fight night proves successful

Legacy Phuket Gazette




PHUKET: The choice of Seduction Beach Club and Disco, one of Bangla’s most popular clubs, as the venue for Phuket’s inaugural Full Metal Dojo MMA event proves that the organizers had a lot of confidence in their success. And rightly so.

At first impression, it seemed that only a few Thais were among the crowd of 500 or so MMA fans at the event, but when the cheer-the-ring announcer and organizer of the event, Jon Nutt, switched from English to Thai, it proved otherwise.

This element of creating an event for Thai fans and for foreigners was present throughout the evening. “We’re bringing MMA to Thailand, we’re bringing Thais to MMA,” kept repeating Nutt, and to prove his point, he began the event with a daring performance of Sansoen Phra Barami, the Thai Royal Anthem.

However, as good as it was, it wasn’t the music – including Nutt’s interpretation of Metallica’s Enter Sandman and a Thai hip-hop freestyle to the tune of Eminem’s Lose yourself – that brought the audience to Seduction, it was the MMA – arguably the world’s fastest growing sport and a discipline that is said to be illegal in Thailand… at least in theory.

The Sports Authority of Thailand banned MMA competitions in 2012, citing the “brutality of the sport” as the reason for their decision.

“Organizing MMA here could mislead the public into believing that Muay Thai is brutal,” said SAT Deputy Governor Sakol Wannapong. “Organizing an MMA event here would hurt the image of Muay Thai. If you want to do this kind of business, you should do it in another country.”

Since then, MMA promoters and their lawyers have sidestepped the ruling by organizing MMA events across the country under the clear legal standpoint that there is no law banning the sport in the Kingdom.

DARE Fight Sports, MMA’s biggest promoter in Thailand, announced last year that the SAT had lifted the ban on MMA – a fact confirmed this week by Santi Pawai, director of the Phuket Office of Tourism and Sports.

“MMA is not illegal. Organizers of this kind of event must ask permission from the local authority… If they get permission, I do not think it will be a problem,” he explained.

“I do not think MMA takes away [from] Muay Thai. Muay Thai is unique. It cannot be taken away [from].”

Legally in the clear, Full Metal Dojo saw eight fights with fighters from Thailand, Cambodia, the United States, Canada and Finland, five technical knockouts (TKOs), one referee stoppage and two submissions.

The Hooter’s girls tasked with announcing subsequent rounds were not called into action often, as most of the duels finished within the first round, such as with the first fight, between Dylan “The Muscle” Fussel and Nanthon Chantharamani, with the former claiming the victory by TKO in under a minute.

The only fight to reach the second round was between Ratcharat Yimprai Sakset and Nun “Poe Saksit” Sophea. Despite the event’s relaxed rules, Poe Saksit managed to foul three times and the referees had to stop the fight and award the victory to his opponent.

Emotions peaked during the final bout in which Finland’s Glenn Sparv defied Michael Dubois, who agreed to enter the cage just one day before the event and managed to lose 6kg to make the weigh-in.
By entering the cage at such short notice, Dubois proved his fighting spirit and showcased his skills during the spar, coming close to claiming a first round KO with a destructive kick to Sparv’s face, not to mention a number of textbook Judo throws.

However, it was Sparv who claimed victory when the referee stopped the fight after Sparv landed a series of knee kicks on Dubois’ head.

If you missed Phuket’s first MMA bout, do not despair. Many of the Full Metal Dojo fighters will attend the August rematch event, for which a venue has yet to be announced – and according to Jon Nutt, there is more to come, with plans for one MMA event every six weeks in the works.

— Maciek Klimowicz


Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forum
🔔 Subscribe to our daily newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram


Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

You must be logged in to post a comment Login

Leave a Reply

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Thailand43 seconds ago

Legalising porn, Alcohol sales, Nightlife venue | Good Morning Thailand | Ep.141

Coronavirus (Covid-19)14 mins ago

Omicron Covid-19 variant isn’t in Thailand, DDC director says

Media17 hours ago

No sex please, we’re Thai

Sponsored3 days ago

CBRE recommends top 5 luxury condominiums in Phuket with fantastic locations

Events18 hours ago

An aquatic meal with Olga Belka – taking art to new depths

Transport21 hours ago

Hua Lamphong (Bangkok Train Station) – History and future | VIDEO

Thailand22 hours ago

Bug-eating challenge with Natty, feat. Mark Abbott | VIDEO

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Coronavirus (Covid-19)23 hours ago

UPDATE: Israel bans ALL foreign entry over Omicron

Thailand1 day ago

New variant could dampen Thailand’s reopening enthusiasm

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

UPDATE: Latest news on Omicron – what we know

Tourism2 days ago

Songkhla prepares for tourism across the Southern land border

Thailand2 days ago

French expat being denied re-entry to Thailand over repeated criticism of the Thai monarchy

Coronavirus (Covid-19)2 days ago

COVID-19 SATURDAY: 6,073 infections, 32 deaths, provincial data

Coronavirus (Covid-19)2 days ago

Omicron causing concern, Thai authorities ban travellers from 8 countries

Coronavirus (Covid-19)2 days ago

Thailand’s nightlife venues and bars told to keep closed until January 16

Protests2 days ago

Amnesty International under investigation for defending activists

Thailand3 months ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism9 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism9 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand9 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism9 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand10 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand11 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11