Saemapetch Fairtex is the latest competitor from the world-renowned training camp in Pattaya, Thailand, to bring his elite talents to ONE Championship.
The 23-year-old aims to follow in the footsteps of his teammate Yodsanklai IWE Fairtex, and score a victory in his ONE Super Series debut this Saturday.
On 7 July, Saemapetch will face Deividas “The Savage Sitsongpeenong” Danyla in a Muay Thai bantamweight encounter at ONE: BATTLE FOR THE HEAVENS in Guangzhou, China, where a victory will direct him towards a World Title opportunity.
Before he enters the Guangzhou Tianhe Gymnasium, take this opportunity to learn a little bit more about the talented Thai.
Another Man’s Treasure
Saemapetch was born and raised in Chiang Rai in Northern Thailand where life for the young Thai was immensely difficult.
His family was tragically impoverished, and they earned money by collecting and recycling bottles and plastics. Saemapetch and his younger brother pitched in and helped, which gave the family the potential to earn more.
Despite being a well-behaved kid, it became clear that his academic pursuits were unlikely to help pull his family out of poverty, though it was not because of a lack of effort.
“As a child, I was very obedient and very quiet,” he explains. “I was not good in school, but I tried hard.”
However, before he entered his teenage years, he would stumble upon the sport that would change his life, and help change his family’s fortunes.
Saved By Muay Thai
Like many young Thais who come from families living hand-to-mouth and just barely surviving, Saemapetch saw Muay Thai as a way to try and break the cycle.
He may not have been the brightest student at school, but he possessed a great work ethic, which lent itself well to the martial arts.
Saemapetch was first introduced to Muay Thai when he was 11. The town mayor spotted him on the street and asked him if he wanted to try out the sport. With his options limited, he decided to give it a go.
“As a kid, the only way to make money in our country is to fight,” he explains. “I decided to start training, and I had my first bout at a temple festival.”
He showed prodigious talent and believed if he could hone his skills, he could be a success in the ring. Most importantly, he could use Muay Thai as a way to help better his family’s financial situation.
“I wanted to do this to support my family and provide them with a good life,” says Saemapetch, who adds his family was behind him all the way.
He initially studied “the art of eight limbs” under a trainer named Chuvalit in Chiang Mai, whom the youngster credits as the person who taught him everything.
From there, he quickly rose up the ranks. Three years after picking up the sport, the aspiring superstar found himself competing for the first time at the famous Rajadamnern Stadium in Bangkok.
A Man In Uniform
Saemapetch may have been rising up the Muay Thai ranks, but he always had his heart set on serving his country.
“As a kid, I always wanted to be a soldier or a police officer,” he reveals.
Though he did not become a police officer, he did realize his other childhood dream, and he even got the opportunity to display some of his martial arts skills in the process.
“I served in the Thai military for two years,” he continues. “I competed in the army’s amateur boxing championships, and I was the tournament winner in 2017 at 63 kilograms.”
The army might provide a stable living for a young man in Thailand, but success in the ring could bring enough wealth to share with the whole family.
With that in mind, Saemapetch crossed his childhood dream off his bucket list, and moved on to his pursuit of a Muay Thai career.
The Road To ONE Super Series
Saemapetch has enjoyed a highly-successful career already.
Ever since his first bout at the temple when he was 11, the Chiang Mai native has compiled a phenomenal 114-16-1 record.
Along the way, he captured the Tiger Cement Tournament Championship at the Channel 7 Stadium, and in April, he won the Muay Thai Grand Prix Welterweight World Championship.
Now preparing at the Fairtex Training Center in Pattaya, Thailand, alongside the legendary Yodsanklai IWE Fairtex and Frenchman Yohann Fairtex Drai, Saemapetch is ready to bring his skills to ONE Super Series with the intention of capturing some more gold.
“I want to win a ONE World Title and be one of the top fighters in the world,” he says.
Saemapetch will kick off his promotional journey this Saturday at ONE: BATTLE FOR THE HEAVENS, where he is scheduled to meet IMC Muay Thai World Champion Deividas Danyla in a ONE Super Series Muay Thai bantamweight clash.
The Fairtex representative is quite familiar with his foe, and believes he can defeat Danyla if he is careful not to play into his opponent’s game.
“I have seen his bouts. He has good hands, but I have more experience in Muay Thai than him. I have to be smart, and not exchange crazy punches with him,” he explains.
“A win would be great for my debut in ONE. I just hope I can give a good performance for the ONE fans.”
Guangzhou | 7 July | LIVE and FREE on the ONE Super App: http://bit.ly/ONESuperApp | TV: Check local listings for global broadcast