The long-awaited IFMA 2021 World Championships in Bangkok commenced today and began with the One Standard Muaythai Cultural Workshop lead by Cultural Commission Chair Ajahn Chao alongside Kru Id with special guest and multiple world champion and muaythai superstar Buakaw.
The afternoon began at Nimibutr Stadium with a whopping 134 bouts. Bangkok witnessed the true spirit of muaythai with not only top performances from former seasoned senior IFMA world champions such as Dzimitry Varats from Belarus and Russia’s Ekaterina Vinnikova but also from the Junior elite such as Quinty Klein and the Smith Brothers Fergus and Finlay Smith making their way into the Quarter Finals.
The IFMA Athletes prevailed in class with respect and honor to one another. Two years of non-competition and social distancing were certainly challenging but the connections made with the IFMA Virtuals and the #MuaythaiConnects campaign truly shone with the most active virtual players, Team Philippines and Afghanistan coaches in one corner for the prevailing athlete, Mohammad Yousuf Jahangir from Afghanistan.
Strict health and safety measures have been undertaken including daily ATK Testing and capped spectator capacity at Nimibutr Stadium. The “New Normals” and strict measures have certainly been challenging but the IFMA Family is devoted to keeping the health and safety of the athletes as their number one priority. Through the dedication, planning and hard work of the IFMA administration and local organizing committee and cooperation of all national federations, coaches, athletes, medical professionals and the beloved technical officials, the nakmuay of IFMA have safely and officially returned to live competition at the international scale.