A Few Words with Lumpinee Champion Yodpayak Sitsongpeenong
Yodpayak is one of the many elite level fighters from Sitsongpeenong making waves in the Muay Thai scene around the world. Currently he holds the Lumpinee Staridum Super Welterweight Championship belt (154lbs), is ranked #3 at Rajadamnern and has been Omnoi Stadium champion as well.
Muay Thai Guy writer and current student at Sitsongpeenong camp in Bangkok, Angela Chang, sat down and had a chance to talk with this young champion:
Angela Chang (AC): Hello, Yodpayak! How are you doing today?
Yodpayak Sitsongpeenong (Y): I’m good, thank you.
AC: Tell us about your career with fighting. When and where did you start training and fighting?
Yodpayak: I started when I was 10 years old started training and fighting. I started near my home in Maha Sarakham Province in Isaan.
AC: What are some current and past titles and achievements you’ve accomplished?
Yodpayak: I’m a former Omnoi Stadium champion at 154 lb and the current Lumpinee Stadium Champion at 154 lb. I’m ranked #1 by Rajadamnern Stadium at 160 lb, and #3 by Thailand PAT at 154 lb.
AC: What does your training regimen look like when you’re preparing for a fight?
Yodpayak: I train everyday, regardless if I have a fight. The training volume is increased about 10 days before fight day. I run 10-15 km every morning and train twice a day, for about 2-3 hours a session.
AC: Last year in February, you won the Lumpinee title at 70 kg. Do you credit just your training for that big victory?
Yodpayak: I credit my training. We trained specifically for more and endurance. I was extremely motivated to be the Lumpinee champion.
AC: You’ve only have to defend it once and you did it successfully, but it was almost a full year after you won it. Are there not a lot of 70-kg/154 lb fighters in Thailand?
Yodpayak: There are not many opponents for me that are ranked by Lumpinee (to fight for the belt) 154 lb
AC: You’ve fought on a Muay Thai show but fought with MMA gloves (MX Muay Xtreme) once and you will do it again. What was it like? Any strategies that are different?
Yodpayak: It’s more difficult with the small gloves because sometimes you get poked in the eyes with the fingers (accident and on purpose) and it’s dangerous. Besides that, they were okay to fight with. The good thing about the MMA gloves is that the punches land more solidly – with the bigger gloves, sometimes your gloves slide off with the punches.
AC: What style of fighting would you say you have?
Yodpayak: I like to kick and clinch!
AC: What does fighting mean to you?
Yodpayak: It’s work for me. I have to fight to earn money in order to support my family. But I also want people to know and recognize me in the sport.
AC: Who was the most difficult person you fought?
Yodpayak: Jimmy Vienot. I fought him in France and lost. He knows a lot about Muay Thai and used all his weapons really well in the fight.
AC: What are your goals as a fighter? Where would you like to take your career?
Yodpayak: I can fight anywhere and fight under any rules, whether it’s K1 or Muay Thai. I do it to support my family.
AC: What about after you’re done fighting? What would you like to do then?
Yodpayak: I want to be a trainer close to my home in Maha Sarakham.
AC: Who is your biggest role model?
Yodpayak: Kaoklai Kaenorssing. He fought very big foreigners and won against them. He was exciting to watch.
AC: Anything you have to say to your fans?
Yodpayak: Follow me and I will do my best! Thank you.
Yodpayak’s Fighter Profile
Fight Record: 187 Fights – 143 Wins – 42 Losses – 2 Draws
Current Lumpinee Stadium Super Welterweight Champion (154lbs)
Former Omnoi Stadium Super Welterweight Champion (154lbs), 2014
No.1 – Rajadamnern Stadium at Middleweight (160lbs), Jan 2016
No.3 – Thailand (PAT) at Super Middleweight (154), Jan 2016
Fighter Name: Yodpayak Sitsongpeenong
Real Name: Waranat Ponnikom
Nick Name: Tour
Date of Birth January 22, 1993 (24 years old)
Home Province Maha Sarakham
Normal Wt.: 165lbs (75kg)
Fight Wt.: 154lbs – 160lbs (70 – 72.5kg)
Height: 5’ 10” (177cm)
Started Fighting: 11 y.o.
Thank you Andi Rogner for translating.