Muaythai opens at Asian Indoor & Martial Art Games 2017. The beautiful city of Ashgabat in the heart of Central Asia plays the host for 5th AIMAG 2017. Muaythai is one of the most popular sports at the game and because of the nigh number of National Olympic Committees sending teams, Muaythai had to start before the opening ceremony. IFMA Technical Delegate, Dmitry Putlin stated that preparation have been well and the result is seen that the arena looks amazing and was packed to the last seat.
For the first time Oceania also sent a representative with a team of men and women from Tahiti, and they join teams from every corner of Asia under the IFMA banner at this great games with 65 nations attending in total.
Yesterday was weigh-in and the all-important draw to make sure everyone is competing in the correct weigh category. IFMA general secretary Stephan Fox is on the ground to support the athletes. And Technical Director Dmitry Putilin has been working with the Ashgabat 2017 team to ensure all is ready for the teams.
FAMA General Secretary Mervyn Tan stated that there will be many upcoming important meeting with many others from the IFMA Executive Board also present.
The opening bouts took place this morning before tonight’s Opening Ceremony. This should be a spectacualr event with two and half hours of entertainment and showcasing of Turkman culture planned by Francisco Negrin.
First in the amateur muaythai ring was Lebanon’s Mahmoud Ghandour taking on Thailand’s Prawit Chilnak at 60kgs in an exciting bout, and the win going to Thailand. This was followed by Ahmed Al-Saedi from Iraq against local champion Turkmenistan’s Maksatmurad Alyyew also at 60kgs. Ahmed took the win in a close bout which really drew in the home crowd.
Kazakhstan and Afghanistan faced off in the third 60kg bout between Yerkanat Ospan and Sayed Jamal Sadat, the Kazakh athlete taking the win on points.
The next three bouts were all at 81kgs, so a big jump up in size which gave great enjoyment to the crowd. Siyuvush Zabirov from Tajikistan took a points win against Jordan’s Mohammed Majed Abedalmaje.
China’s Luo Can won in a great battle against Farid Bahar from Afghanistan. And to the crowd’s delight the final bout of the day went to hometown hero Guylow Dowletmyrat taking a solid win against China’s Du An.
The stadium is decorated in bright shades of green as Turkemenistan’s national colour, with vivid splashes of yellow, green, blue and purple. The Games mascot WePlay was very much in evidence, and many of the muaythai entourage posed for photographs with the colourful statue outside the venue.