The announcement was made at a meeting last Thursday (Sept 23) at the Blue Tree Water Park complex in Cherng Talay, chaired by Phuket Governor Narong Woonciew. Blue Tree will serve as the host venue for the torunament which has been confirmed to take place between Dec 1-12 and which will invite over 800 participating athletes from 80 countries worldwide.
Governor Narong was joined by Daniel Steinke, the General Manager of Blue Tree, at the Blue Tree Club House to welcome representatives from relevant Phuket Provincial Government departments including Rewat Areerob, President of the Phuket Provincial Administrative Organization (PPAO, or OrBorJor), and PPAO Deputy President Anuphap Wetwanitsanong.
The Amateur Boxing Association of Thailand and IFMA will jointly organisethe event in accordance with government policy as one of the projects to promote sports tourism with the goal of creating a good image and building confidence with tourists and foreign investors, said Governor Narong.
The Governor added that the event would help create increased local employment opportunities and raise income which would in turn be distributed within the local community.
“The PPAO is ready to support this event,” commented Mr Anuphap.
“It is a great opportunity to promote the identity of Thai art and culture, of which Muay Thai is a world-famous component,” he added.
“It is also a very good opportunity to help promote and push Phuket as a preferred tourism destination following the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
IFMA President Dr Sakchye Tapsuwan and Secretary General Stephan Fox made a detailed presentation on the event, highlighting in particular the association’s strict policy on prioritising the health and safety of all participants at the core of their work. They were joined by representatives of the Amateur Muay Thai Association of Thailand, IFMA Technical Delegate Ajarn Paiboon Srichaisawat and IFMA’s Local Organising Committee partner Brite Panther, led by CEO Vit
While the main meeting took place at Blue Tree, which will serve as the official competition venue, further site visits were conducted athotels and other venues across the island.
The announcement comes after the International Olympic Committee (IOC) granted the IFMA full recognition at the 138th IOC session in Tokyo in July meaning Muay Thai will be certified as an official Olympic sport in future.