Ben Burrage out-grapples Thai opponent for win at Samui International Muay Thai Stadium

STRAIGHT INTO IT: Ben Burrage from Fighting Arts Tamworth keeping his fitness levels up. Photo: Gareth Gardner
STRAIGHT INTO IT: Ben Burrage from Fighting Arts Tamworth keeping his fitness levels up. Photo: Gareth Gardner

On a Saturday, two weeks after going down in a fight via a points decision, kickboxer Ben Burrage received a call out of the blue.

It was from a contact in Thailand asking Burrage if he’d be able to fly over to the Land of Smiles for a muay thai fight.

When was it? The following Sunday – just eight days later.

Burrage’s response – no problems.

He was in Thailand by Tuesday to prepare for the fight at the Samui International Muay Thai Stadium.

“It was short notice but luckily I’d been training because I’d had a fight a couple weeks before,” Burrage said.

“I took it easy training the weeks between the fights and started hooking in leading up. I spent three days training over there.”

Burrage usually likes five or six weeks to prepare for a fight but with his fitness at a high level, he felt he was ready.

The result backed up the fighter’s thoughts.

Burrage stung his opponent with a couple of punches early who then stuck to the Muay Khao style of fighting.

A Muay Khao is what is known as a knee fighter who mainly grapples with their opponent.

Burrage surprised himself as he went knee-to-knee with his Thai opponent and won via a points decision.

“I can grapple but I didn't think I was that good at it,” Burrage said.

“Grappling – that’s the main thing over there [Thailand]. To beat a Thai in the grapple, that’s a pretty big deal.

“To fight and win under that style, that was pretty cool.”

Burrage will now be out of action for a short period as he goes under the knife.

The Tamworth fighter will have an operation on his eardrum after the injury has caused him hearing and balance problems.

Once healed, Burrage will prepare for another trip to Thailand.

He is looking to head back over for a couple fights in February next year.