This Friday, 7 February, Detrit Sathian Muay Thai has the chance to emerge from out of nowhere and produce one of the most stunning results in martial arts history.
At ONE: WARRIOR’S CODE, the 29-year-old will face Petchmorakot Petchyindee Academy for the inaugural ONE Featherweight Muay Thai World Title in Jakarta, Indonesia, having answered the call to compete on just eight days’ notice.
Even though Detrit’s formidable opponent has the advantage of a full training camp, the ONE Super Series debutant had no hesitation about stepping up to the plate.
“The minute my manager told me that ONE Championship offered me the World Championship bout, I felt like I hit the jackpot,” he says.
“ONE Championship is the biggest martial arts event all over the world in my view. Everyone wants to be part of ONE Championship.
“My manager told me on Thursday night (30 January). Honestly, we almost could not sleep that night. We were so excited. On Friday we started to train as normal, but a lot harder. Normally we will not train on Sunday, but for this fight, we will have no day off.
“We plan to keep training at the hotel in Jakarta. We can not have a full training camp, but we have to do as much as we can. It might not be full training for the fight but I believe in myself 100-percent.”
Detrit may not have had a lot of time to prepare for this contest, but he says he is in good condition having last competed on 17 January, and then returned to the gym to resume training.
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He is also a renowned competitor in “the art of eight limbs” with a decorated history and experience at a high level.
The native of Amphor Granuan in Khon Kaen Province, Isan was a product of the Popteeratam camp owned by arguably the greatest Muay Thai athlete of all time, Samart Payakaroon. Under its banner, he beat another icon of the sport, Singmanee Kaewsamrit, to win the WPMF World Title.
Later, he moved to Sathian Muay Thai gym, where he continued to collect belts, including the IMC Muay Thai World Championship, and took his overall record to 139-44-2 with a hard-hitting, but technical style.
Detrit takes particular pride in his punches, but also suggests his opponent should be wary of his kicks and elbows when they meet in the Indonesian capital.
“I am not afraid of my opponent, not even a bit. I am not worried about less training compared with my opponent who has trained for months. I know what I have,” he says.
“I watched and studied my opponent’s last couple of fights to see what he has. He is a knee fighter, but normally this kind of style will never get along with a puncher like me. Also, ONE Championship will not allow clinching for too long, so he won’t have the chance to use his knees that much.”
Detrit does not deny that Petchmorakot has other tools that can hurt him – one look at his previous bouts in The Home Of Martial Arts makes that obvious – but he is prepared for them.
He also has no problem with adjusting to compete in the 4-ounce mixed martial arts gloves that ONE Super Series athletes use.
“Petchmorakot also has good elbow which is good at short range, but before he comes close to me, I have very good teeps and kicks that can stop him,” Detrit explains.
“What he has more of than me is two years’ experience in ONE Championship, but I will show that I don’t need two years. One week is enough.
“I fought many times in small gloves. It’s nothing new for me. I actually love these gloves. They give more power to your punches. I have to be careful and protect myself because small gloves mean small protection, but I have never been knocked out by a punch and I have taken the punches with the small gloves before. I know I can take it (if he hits me).”
With that said, Detrit believes Petchmorakot will push him to the limit, and that will make for an exciting main event at Jakarta’s Istora Senayan.
“I think this fight will not go far. I predict it will end by knockout,” he adds.
“We will make a very good fight, for sure, because we are both coming for the belt. He has waited for two years to get this chance and I have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take a very short notice bout for a World Championship in my debut. I don’t know when I will get a chance again.
“We both need the belt. I can say I will fight to the end in the ring for this belt.”