Nattadet Wachiraratanawong

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Hi guys just came across this clip of  Nattadet Wachiraratanawong, he’s the son of the Petchyindee promotions boss.  He’s quite outspoken and articulate.  I first learned about him through an interview Rob Cox did on Muay Thai Focus.  Nattadet is the next generation of muay thai promoter who’s really trying to revive our sport.  I respect what he’s trying to do.  This is a very good clip, clearly he’s coming out and speaking on behalf of owners but he makes some very strong points.  I’m hoping to get a skype intervew with him soon.

Here’s a translation of the video:

 

I’m here to respond to my last clip on youtube. Lot’s of people came on to comment.  Lots’ of people were cursing me.. Who didn’t like what I had to say.

 

I’m not angry… I understand where you’re coming from. The more I read the more I understood.   I can see that Thai Society doesn’t understand the workings of Muay Thai.

 

You all think that we are corrupt; we are preserving muay thai, keepers of muay thai. Those of you who are criticizing have you ever done anything to preserve our art?

 

Let’s talk about the big issue…  why did I make my last clip.  I just want to ask Buakaw why didn’t you clear your issues before fighting on last weeks Thai Fight?

 

Everyone knows that fighting that day was against the rules. It was an act that everyone knew would create massive problems in the end.   You’ve already have big problems…   now that you’ve fought you’ve made them twice as bad.

 

I just want to say to the Thai Fight promotion, your actions last week, were disrespectful to all Thai people. Nobody has come out to criticize Thai Fight… but I will.  Because your actions were self serving and selfish.  Why do I feel this way?   You knew it was against the rules for Buakaw to fight.   They sports authority already ruled, but Buakaw still fought.

 

Let me ask you this, you said it was against the rules for Saiyok to fight, because needed a 21 day cooling off period, after his last fight.  That’s why you needed to find another fighter to come in and take his place…  This is the first rule you’ve got wrong.  Saiyok could have fought that night; it wouldn’t have been against the rules.  It was a 3 round fight, which is considered a special bout, not a muay thai bout which is 5 rounds… so Saiyok could have fought.

 

But you didn’t want Saiyok… You wanted Buakaw.  Your second offense… nobody knew Buakaw was going to fight.  Buakaw didn’t even weigh in with the rest of the fighters.  The rules state that a fighter must weigh in before a fight.  This is purely for the fighter’s safety.

 

Your making money off our sport, but your hurting our sport.   You’ve wounded everyone who’s evolved in Muay Thai.  You don’t care about anyone, only the bottom line.  This is really selfish…

 

In my clip I wasn’t taking side, I wasn’t saying any party was wrong.  I’m not here to take sides… I’m just saying it’s wrong. This should have never happened… you guys are saying the rules don’t matter.  This is the issue people…   so if Buakaw was wronged, was owed money… did his fighting in the event solve anything?  If he cleared his issues and it turned out he was owed money, I would be the first to be in his corner, but the issue still hasn’t been resolved!

 

Everyone has come out and taken sides when they haven’t even heard both sides!  What is going on?  When did we stop following rules?  You’re calling me a lawmaker, I’m not a lawmaker, I’m just a small camp owner.  I want to look after our community.  I’m not here to side with investors; I’m not here to oppress fighters.

 

Now I’ve heard of fighters who have are claiming to be free and clear of their camp, because the owner yelled at them for missing curfew on Songkran.  What are we going to do?

 

What I’m most confused about, is that people are saying we are corrupt, crooked that we are controlled by gamblers.  What sport doesn’t have gambling? Football doesn’t have gambling right?

 

We are preserving muay thai for you.

 

Do you think we’re getting rich? You think the camp owners are getting rich?

Not everyone can be like “Thai Fight”You think we can all get big sponsors?

No, we take care of ourselves we’re camp owners who are being demonized, all these youtube comments say we have slave contracts…  saying the the 50/50 is too much, to big of a cut for camp owners.

 

It’s like this… don’t view Buakaw’s case as standard… yes his fighters fee is Millions of Baht, he’s done so much for the sport, What about the fighters who make 10K or 1K?

 

I’ve got to come out and say it… the general public just doesn’t understand how a camp works.  You accuse us of making slavery contracts, The rules and contracts of muay thai are written by everyone involved in the sport, not just the camp owners, and investors.  The laws are written by fighters, camp owners, promoters, stadium officials and the public.  Everyone is involved, that’s why we use them.

 

They originally drafted the rules because of match fixing and fighters throwing fights… it was a big problem in  back then.  The second main reason was to end these slave contracts.  It’s true they existed in the past,  You had to stay with a camp until you died!   Yes I admit those things all existed in the past.

 

If a fighter has a problem, they can quit, they can leave within 3 years to 5 years, depending on what was agreed between the fighter and camp owner.  Some people could be longer, it’ up to the parties involved.  If the camp owner is remiss, they withhold money, withhold fights from a fighter, or negatively impact their career; a fighter can find a new camp in 3-5 years.  Those are the rules…

 

This is what I want to talk about.  There are a lot of people who’ve got nothing to do with muay thai, or any understanding of muay thai criticizing us.  Cristisizing the people who are preserving muay thai.

 

If people like me weren’t around, where would Muay Thai be?  If I was doing my part at Lumpini or Rajadomnern, What would muay thai look like?  Would it be like Thai Fight?  How many people could pull of an event like Thai Fight?  Are there enough Thai Fighters to organise an event like Thai Fight?  That’s the problem…  You say 50/50 is too much!

 

I’ll tell you how it works. Thailand is different from other countries…  If you want to be a famous fighter, you need to start off training,  you would find an academy or school or gym, and pay them to train you.  Once you’ve become good, then you’ve got to find a promoter to get you into shows… then yeah, you deserve to keep all of your winnings.

 

You started off on your own, you built yourself up.   Muay Thai isn’t like that… Do you know how nak muay start off?   We take a trip to the provinces and you basically adopt a kid.  You find about 30 of them who are interested.  Of these 30 kids who knows who will pan out? Who knows if they’ll become boxers.  It’s like planting seeds… you won’t know which seedling will grow or die.

 

You have to sow the seeds in the beginning, Then you have to make sure these 30 kids go to school, you need to feed them, you need to train them.  You don’t think this takes money? From 7 to 8 years old until they are grown and even then you won’t know if they’ll be delinquent, even then you won’t know if they’ll be any good?

 

Suppose you get one who’s the best who’s amazing… what is his fighter’s fee?  About 100K THB this is about the most you can get in our sport.  That’s it about 100K, and in those 15 years how much money did the camp owner spend developing all those kids?  After the fighter is making money, fighting for 100K, the camp owner still has to pay the fighter, it’s not like he has to stop paying the fighter.  The owner still has to pay his trainers to train the fighter, still is paying for the fighters, food and housing…  if that fighter get sick or injured, the owner of the camp still has to pay.    If the fighter doesn’t have enough money for the month, the owner still has to let him borrow some.

 

There are a lot of good camp owners out there people.  Don’t think that everyone in muay thai is corrupt.   If you still want to comment or criticize you need to be informed.  I’m not here to take sides,

I only want to talk about one point, why did buakaw fight the other day?  Why didn’t he clear his issues with his camp first?    I don’t know why, you don’t know why…  People have heard Buakaw’s side of the story and they’ve made their mind up.

 

This is another problem in our society… speculation. The papers speculate, all day long and before long everyone believes it.  But in the end, no one is interested in the truth, what’s really happening.  People only listen to the talking heads on tv. Wait to hear both sides of the story.

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About Author

I started My Muay Thai back in 2006… I was tired of reading about MMA, and wanted somewhere I could watch real muay thai fights, be inspired and connect with others who love muay thai as much as I do…

I currently live in London… when I’m not geeking out over muay thai you can find me bombing around London on my scrambler, ferreting out the latest street food gems.

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