This is the real fight club.. But don’t talk about it.. (Sshhh!) Many will be well familiar with the Brad Pitt and Edward Norton movie ‘Fight Club’ but not as many will be aware of the real life Fight Club.
The influences come from many areas, not just from the movie. These brutal street fights all over the world are normally fuelled by money, and sometimes fame. It’s becoming something that the police are struggling to contain.
Fights are becoming so advanced now days that they have their own referees and weight divisions. Referring helps prevent illegal blows such as rabbit punches and shots to the back of the head. Many of the fights even have a medic on standby, something we didn’t see in the movie Fight Club.
In Bangkok Thailand, the police are hot on the case and looking at shutting down these meet ups. The locals in Bangkok have got involved too, working with the police and giving tip off’s on the locations of these events.
Chief organiser Joe Nok, 32 who helps to set up the street duels online has recently defended the matchup’s. Nok says that they shouldn’t be banned as these fights are nothing more than just sparring matches. “They are just aggressive sparring,” said Joe Nok.
Joe went on to say, “The atmosphere is simply electric. You have to be very brave to step into the ring. The crowd loves it.”
“There’s blood being spilled , bones cracking and bruises. But this country is the home of Muay Thai. Do you want fairy kisses and cuddles?”
“The fights are aggressive but they are safe. We have a referee to make sure nobody cheats and there’s always a medic watching in case anybody gets injured.”
Joe went on to explain how everyone who takes part is a winner, it’s not all about winning a losing, “Everybody is a winner. We have no losers here. We’re just ordinary people with normal day jobs that like to fight.”
“The police spoke with us and said it’s a bit dangerous because we fight on the floor without mats. But this is more like sparring and not an illegal match as there is no winner or loser declared. It’s just like fitness training, so we are allowed to carry on.”
The footage that has been leaked of these fights might have you thinking that these fights aren’t so ‘safe,’ as they show people being kicked to the head and being slammed to the floor. A floor that is concrete. Young kids are receiving bruises, black eyes and cuts.
There is no protective headgear insight. The only protection these guys have is a gum shield and gloves. MMA style gloves as the rules state you are aloud to grapple.
Fights last a total of three minutes, in that time you are aloud to kick, punch, throw elbows, knees and grapple. Using different skills such as Muay Thai, Jujitsu, Judo amongst other MMA styles.
Police are trying their best to working on stopping these fights, looking to fond out what laws these kids are breaking.
“The fights are dangerous because the only protection for the fighters are thin gloves and teeth guards,” said Commissioner Sanit Mahathavorn.
“We will investigate whether the matches are illegal. We will find and prosecute anyone organizing illegal boxing matches that are not sanctioned by official bodies.”
Mahathavorn also said that the organisers of these matchup’s could face jail time of up to a year and have a fine of 20,000thb ($585)
Unlicensed boxing became illegal back in 1899, since then many tournaments and events have been shut down and the organisations punished.
“I’ve seen these fights and I don’t see it as boxing. I do want to support them, but they have to do it the right way, because safety is a priority,” said Pol. Lt. Gen. Sanit.
”I believe that everyone had good intentions, but what they’re doing now is illegal. I invite the people who were involved before to come to the police station at Bang Rak, or come see me. I will happily give them advice.”
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