Thank you Mr FOX
Muaythai, the Olympic dream
The news spread like wildfire in the microcosm of Muay Thai: the discipline finally opened up the doors of Olympics.
It’s the main topic of conversation in Muay Thai training rooms worldwide during the evening practice sessions.
Obviously, Muay Thai won’t be declared an Olympic sport once and for all from next month. It’s only a recognition that allows it to enter a sort of “prequalification chamber” in order to improve to comply with Olympic Charter. This step should run in a probationary period of 3 years. At the end of these 3 years, Muay Thai will definitely become an Olympic sport, or it will have to improve even more to comply with Olympic Charter, or it will be rejected.
But for the IOC, recognizing a sport represents several years of work and follow-up. That’s why we can reasonably think that they found the case interesting enough to make it go on, so now the idea is probably not to go out from the program…
These prospects are changing and will change many things in the microcosm of Muay Thai. But before seeing what will change for everyone – trainers, organizers, practitioners, federation heads –, let’s talk for a while about “the ones” who have done their best to make this Olympic dream finally come true.
Years of work have been necessary to reach this step…
If today Muay Thai gained its ticket for Olympic games, it’s all thanks to the tireless work some people started more than 20 years ago… A lot of trainers from all over the world, of boxers and federation heads took part in this structuring project through international meetings and sport coordination meetings. Although now these trainers, managers and federation heads are not in office anymore, they still can be proud of participating in this great success by giving work, energy, and involvement.
Some of them have not been able to see the outcome of this dream in their lifetime, even though they largely had taken the initiative of it. A special thought to General MESAMONTA.
Other ones, like Jacques MAIRESSE in France, Mr. KAYCHON in Thailand, or other federation heads from other countries also participated in it.
Whether we like them or not doesn’t matter. That’s not the issue. History must remember that they have taken part in this great project.
Of course, this project has been the subject of many discussions, involvements, and even disagreements, but that’s exactly how great projects were born.
At the very beginning, other amateur movements competing in the IFMA championships were present in Thailand.
Several conciliation meetings have been organized in high places with various spokespersons including ministerial ones.
Coordination with General THANAJARO, president of WMC, required long, very long adjustments, as well as meetings, discussions in high places, competition, political supports, trust, willpower, involvement, work, work, and work again.
During all these years, despite down times, problems, conflicts, new spokespersons, the climate of political instability, and the moments in which everything seemed to go wrong, it has been necessary to stay on course, to go on believing in it, to “not give up” as sportsmen say.
And to stay on course, a real captain was needed, a man who, through thick and thin, went on believing in it, at all costs, and went on making progress, working, working and working again.
This man behind this great project is Mr. Stephan FOX (Wikipedia).
Indeed, if Muay Thai has gotten where it is today, it’s largely all thanks to this man who dedicated a great part of his life to Olympic dream.
The project is the outcome of at least 20 years of a tireless work with the aim of getting Olympic recognition.
Stephan has been able to gain trust of Thai generals and authorities and to make his mark with his work.
Because some things have to be said, today we congratulate General Pichitr KULLAVANIJAYA, Doctor Sakchye TAPSUWAN, Mr. Kajorn PROWSRI, and above all and always with great respect, the big world family of Muay Thai tells you “Thank you Mr. Fox, you have done a great job”.
Of course, things are not over, Muay Thai is actually beginning a brand-new chapter, but it’s important to enjoy victories as they represent open doors to further evolution.
To finish, because we respect Thai culture, of course we have a special thought for his Majesty the King BHUMIBOL ADULYADEJ who would certainly have been very pleased by this advance that enables Thailand to extend its influence in the world.