Seksan Or Kwanmuang lit up the ONE Friday Fights series with six consecutive wins to earn a six-figure ONE Championship contract. Now he will step into U.S. primetime for the first time on Friday, Nov. 3, to show why he is known as “The Man Who Yields To No One.”
But before he faces Johan Estupinan at ONE Fight Night 16, Seksan reflected on his formative years and how it shaped him into one of Muay Thai’s most exciting athletes.
“I went to school when I was young and got bullied. I came home crying, and my dad asked me what had happened. I said I was bullied and cried. So, he put me in Muay Thai training from that day. He taught me, and I have trained from that day until now,” Seksan told ONE.
Getting into Muay Thai gave the striking star self-belief. As he began sharpening his skills and finding success, Seksan was quick to give back to his family – even during those early years.
“The training gave me courage and showed me to have no fear. I liked it,” he recalled.
“When I fought, I earned money to buy snacks and to give to my parents. I have been fighting since then.”
However, being successful doesn’t mean everything was sunshine and rainbows for the burgeoning star. Hard decisions still had to be made in order to pursue his sport at its greatest heights.
At just 15 years old, Seksan moved to Bangkok, where he found it difficult to be away from his support system.
“At first, I cried every day. I could only call my parents and cry all the time. I cried during training, in the bedroom, even when I took a shower. I cried a lot when I was young,” the Thai star said.
“It took me months to adjust to Bangkok. I had never been away from my family, so it took many months for me to get used to it.”
A new family would emerge in the form of his new coaches, however. Not only did they inspire his growth as a Muay Thai athlete, but they helped him mature into the man he is today.
“I stopped crying because my trainers and my seniors gave me advice about training and told me to be patient because I was fighting for my family and my future,” Seksan said.
Finally comfortable in his new home, Seksan would soon rise to the top of the sport.
He won four world championships before coming to ONE, and, ahead of his return to Lumpinee Boxing Stadium, Seksan reflected on a couple key moments from those earlier times that shaped him into a legend in Thailand.
“In 2011, I received the prize for Fight of the Year at Rajadamnern. I was knocked down twice in that fight, but I got one knockdown back and finally won by knockout. From then, I fought with an aggressive style and yielded to none – that’s when I got the nickname,” the 34-year-old said.
“Receiving the Rajadamnern Stadium Muay Thai world title [in 2018] motivated me, as it is one of the most renowned belts. It was a good time in my life.”
Although he stood atop the mountain, Seksan still suffered setbacks. Nonetheless, his family was always there to encourage him along the way.
In how he performed in ONE Friday Fights, though, nobody would ever have known about his crisis of confidence. Seksan stormed through the series with a perfect 6-0 record and multiple $10,000 performance bonuses.
Now he is ready to continue his path in ONE on the grand stage of Prime Video.
“My motivation is my family. Both of my kids and my parents. My [ONE] bouts changed my family’s life a lot. They can live a better and more comfortable life,” Seksan said.
“I have savings for both my kids for college. I have money for my parents. More importantly, I bought a house in Nakhon Si Thammarat. I’ve been very successful with ONE.”
“I was thinking about stopping fighting at the age of 34 or 35. I never thought I would get this much money. I feel so happy.”
ONE Fight Night 16 airs live on Prime Video at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT on Friday, Nov. 3. The event is free for all Amazon Prime subscribers based in the U.S. and Canada.
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