All the stars were on that show, Namkabon, Orono, Sakmongkol, Pirote so it was a honor to be getting high fives from all the legends after the fight. Pretty much after that I spent 4 years on the circut fighting along side this guys every month and all started to become friends and hang out when we went on fight trips.
Here is the most crazy and lucky part of my stay in Thailand. We had about 8-10 fighters in the camp, one night one of the boys got in trouble because Por heard that he was going to throw a fight for money. That night he talked all the other younger fighters to run away with him. I had been in Pattaya for a weeks holiday after one of my early fights, when I got back all the fighters besides Sangtien had run away. This left just the owner Por, his wife, his two grown up sons who were the trainers, a pad holder and Sangtien. For the next four years I had to become Sangtiens sparring partner, grappling partner and pretty much his all round bit*h. The trainers only had two people two watch so I learnt on the job very fast. It was only Sangtien and I making a income for the camp so I got to fight plenty and make some not bad money for a Thai fighter (over there it was good money, cut that by 50% and its not much).
One of my scary fight was agianst Hanarong, not because he was a big name, but because at the time the bloke was a monster. I was lucky to win over five rounds and live to tell the story.
In the year 2000 after beating Scott Bannon for my first world title I travelled back to Thailand to fight on the Kings birthday. Masato was suppose to fight Orono but rumor had it that Orono had Hep B. Masato and his managment pulled out from fighting Orono wanting another opponent. I was suppose to fight another Thai but Songchai said I looked to big and decided then and there that tomorrow I would now fight Orono instead. I pooed my pants because Orono had already stopped me once before cutting me 21 stitches. This time however I was a little more experienced and managed to beat him over 5 round on points in front of 100,000 people, live on Thai tv for his world title. To win a world title in Thailand after all the years I had lived there was the ultimate experience I could have ever dreamed of.
Sorry many stories, could write all day as its so much fun thinking back to the madness. I hope you enjoyed the little trip down memory lane.