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Posted: 2006-08-18 23:05:59
To Benares,

In one of his interviews, Ramon Dekker said, his trainer, Johan Vos incorporated various elements of martial arts such as savate, boxing, judo, penjak silat, etc. He even suggested Japanese fighters to fight the Thais with the karate/boxing combos. I'm not sure how serious he was about that comment. I have never heard of anyone in Japan to agree with Dekker's suggestion. There were only a handful of those using the karate/boxing combo to have minor success against the Thais; Don Wilson, Manson Gibson, Dale Cook, and Pete Cunningham. I guess he just wanted to stress you should not just copy what the Thais do. If you watch football( I mean soccer for the Americans), each country plays differently. The same thing has to be applied to muay thai.

Takeda is primarily known for his leg kicks and punches. This is not his fault, but his trainer Nagae's. Initially Takeda wanted to mix up with the body kicks and other techniques, but Nagae prohibited it.

As for Ogasawara, it was his manager/trainer Shin'ichi Ihara had worked with the officials of the Radjamnern stadium. Ihara promoted several events in the stadium, and the Thai officials has known Japan is quite a lucrative market for muay thai. I heard that the Radjamnern had some financial difficulties so that they decided to co-operate with Ihara's Shin-Nippon Kickboxing Federation. This is why both Takeda and Ogasawara were given the title shots. This upset even the Japanese fans. They began to see the muay thai they always respect and appreciate had begun to change in the less respectable way.

Kobayashi has been the best since the '90s. But in my opinion, he has taken too much punishment. He has never been known for his defensive tactics. I wonder how long he can last as far as his chance to get a title shot. I guess the fans are still looking for new bloods coming up.

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