Combat Sports

Interview With Rodtang Jitmuangnon, ONE Flyweight Muay Thai Champion

Image for Interview With Rodtang Jitmuangnon, ONE Flyweight Muay Thai Champion

September 22, 2018 at ONE Championship: Conquest of Heroes in Jakarta ONE Championship fans were first given the honor to witness Muay Thai legend Rodtang Jitmuangnon in his full glory.

The Thai sensation defeated Sergio Wielzen in a very one sided decision victory setting his marker and letting ONE Championship and the world know that Rodtang Jitmuangnon was here!

Then, tragedy struck as Rodtang lost his mentor, Huan Jitmuangnon, due to a sudden heart attack. However, Rodtang used this tragedy as a  motivation following the tragic death to bring home the ONE Championship gold. Rodtang defeated Jonathan Haggerty to claim the ONE Flyweight Muay Thai World Title with a decisive decision win after Haggerty previously called him out at ONE Championship: For Honor.

Rodtang with his family

The very following year tragedy struck again prior to his rematch with Haggerty, Rodtang found out his father had Stage 3 cancer. Neither Rodtang’s father nor mother had ever seen him compete on the global stage before, and in true Rodtang fashion the man nicknamed “The Iron Man” due to his deadly iron fists brought them to the epic rematch so that they could cherish the memories of their son doing what he does best.

In front of his parents, Rodtang defeated Haggerty in devastating fashion In a fight where he knocked Haggerty down a total of four times, including a liver shot in the first round, Rodtang went on to retain his ONE FC Flyweight Muay Thai Championship with a third-round TKO victory after delivering three knockdowns in that same round.

Since that fantastic moment Rodtang has gone from strength to strength putting on stellar performances and cementing himself as a fan favorite with ONE Championship fans, I caught up with the man himself to get a insight into who is the “Iron Man” Rodtang Jitmuangnon.

Rodtang on his way to his impressive victory over Haggerty

Interview with Rodtang

How does it feel to be a legend in Muay Thai at such a young age?

I feel glad and honored to achieve my dream.

Are there any new fighters in or outside of ONE Championship that intrigue you?

I have no preference on athletes outside ONE Championship. But I would go for Aung La N Sang. He’s very friendly, and we sometimes chat.

Would a fight with Tawanchai be of any interest in the near future?

I don’t think this fight is possible, for me. Tawanchai is much bigger than me.

Recently you said you would be open to a super series fight with Demetrious Johnson, how big would this be for you, and how do you feel the fight would go?

This is going to be an interesting fight. I’d love to fight with him, he got good speed which I admired, and he likes my fighting style as well.

I believe you were 15 years old the last time you were finished in a Muay Thai event. What do you attribute to fighting in one of the most brutal martial arts for the last nine years without being stopped?

Yes, I never get any KO since then, I just improve myself every day, I just only learn from the mistakes and be ready even more on every fight I compete.

At 23 years old, you’re already the pound for pound best Muay Thai fighter on the planet, what else is there for you to achieve?

For now, I want to keep ONE Flyweight Muaythai World Champion belt with me as long as I can. Secondly, I’d love to try kickboxing and MMA bout if I get a chance as well.

How does it feel to be part of such a huge organisation like ONE Championship and working with Chatri Sityodtong?

Nothing better than this in my Nak Muay life. To compete in such a world class stage like ONE Championship is the highest dream that all Nak muay dreams for. Chatri motivates me a lot, he inspires me to fight for my life, fight for my family. He’s a real HERO.

You recently received a call out from Lito Adiwang what is your response to the call out and how do you see a potential match going?

If he wants me, I will go for it. I can fight with him in any rules either Muay thai or Kickboxing. I think his fighting style like me, and possibly for each of us to KO.   But if he wants MMA, I wanted to have more experience, probably 1 year and I’ll be more ready to fight with him.

All at Overtime Heroics MMA would like to thank Rodtang Jitmuangnon and the people of ONE Championship for making this interview possible. You can catch all ONE Championship events live on the ONE Super App and the ONE Championship YouTube Channel!

Follow me on Twitter @JamesRees83 for more MMA news and discussions. Also, make sure to follow @OT_Heroics for all of your sporting needs. Don’t forget @OTHeroicsMMA for all things MMA. Discuss this and much more at the Overtime Heroics Forums.

Featured Image Credits to ONE Championship PR

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James Rees is host of ReesTalks Podcast and a Football, F1 and MMA writer, who strives to bring you the best content aswel as bringing you interviews with some of the sports top stars.