Top Sporting Legends

Top Sporting Legends

Thai people are inherently sports-minded individuals. Most Thai children start their career in physical education as early as first grade, as it's compulsory for students to take part in PE classes. Thai students take part in a wide variety of sports, ranging from character-forming sports such as volleyball and basketball to more extreme sports such as free climbing and rock climbing.

Thailand's legendary athletes have represented their country at both national and international events. While the Thais are not particularly good at team sports, the country has many sports personalities who are recognized worldwide. Many of these athletes were trained with western coaches and have been recognized for their exceptional skills in solo sports. Thailand has many sporting legends who've gained fame over the decade, making it to the list of the world's best sportsmen.

Consider Sakmongkol Sittchuchoke. Sakmongkol is a legendary Thai kickboxer. He was a regular fixture at Lumpinee stadium in the early nineties, holding the coveted Lumpinee belt throughout his career. Sakmongkol was famously known as "Jade Face Left Kicker" due to his reputation for delivering some of the hardest left kicks in the biz. Looking back, his best kicks came against champion players like Sangtiennoi Sor Rungroj, Orono Por Muang Ubon, and Jongsanan Fairtex.

One of the greatest sporting legends in Thailand, Sakmongkol Sittchuchokes, was born on 4 November 1969 in Breda, Holland. The athlete was 12 years old when he started training in martial arts. He first learned judo and later boks. Soon after, the legend began training in Muay Thai, and zakocha matka for his first games.

Sakmongkol Sittchuchoke earned fame and became known as the "Sakmongkol Sittchuchoke of Thailand." Sakmongkol Sittchuchok was a previous Thai kickboxing champion. He made the world's top ten lists of all-time boxers, winning more than 50 medals. He became an undisputed world champion and remains one of the greatest Thai boxers of all time. His career peaked at the end of the decade, and the legend retired from professional sport in the 1990s.

The boxer was a technical fighter who rose quickly through the ranks during his successful career. His trademark spinning elbows were highly effective in scoring knockdowns, a technique that's hard to execute against world-class competition. However, despite his lack of power, he never showed signs of fading as the years passed; he remained a legend for many years.

Another famous athlete in Thailand is Tamarine Radchatakriengkai. Tamarine, a female athlete, is a national ice hockey player who has represented her country in multiple leagues in Thailand and abroad. She was the first Thai woman to win an Olympic medal in the sport. She later married Chinese legend, Feng Kun, winning a world championship in women's ice hockey. Hideki also received the prestigious "Best Female Athlete" award at the 2019 National Sports Day Awards Ceremony.

Next is the Thai athlete, Paradorn. The athlete was quite renowned for her politeness on the sporting court. To welcome her fans, she performed the wai, a traditional Thai greeting that involves clasping hands together. She also bowed to the corners of the stadium to thank fans, an action that has become synonymous with her trademark etiquette. Paradorn's success has greatly boosted the tennis sport in Thailand. In 2002, she was named the "Thai Sportswoman of the Year" by the Nation newspaper. She was also featured in Time magazine's article that covered the most outstanding Asian sporting heroes.

In the 21st century, we've seen many athletes and sporting legends emerge. This has been a great time to follow sport in Thailand and the world as we have seen new talents being discovered, rising to the top of their respective sports. It was difficult to pick just three sporting legends. The trio we have chosen are all Thai-born and have achieved a great deal at an international level. They have all represented Thailand with pride on the world stage and have made a significant contribution to their respective sports.

With the great information explosion, we have more access to the events happening around the world today than ever before. We have seen a few Thai athletes make their mark on the world stage, but we are still waiting for Thailand to produce a few more sporting legends. Over the years, Thailand's sporting world has undergone drastic changes, with many of its most famous sporting heroes retiring or stepping away from the public eye. This is a celebration of the most successful Thai athletes of the 21st century.