Muay Thai Legend Ramon Dekkers Passes Away at Age 43
Legends are made of their past performances and Thai fighters legends are made fighting in Thailand. Win, lose or draw, it is a matter of leaving a statement in the ring and the leaving fans happy. Some may argue that Ramon Dekkers was too respected as a thai boxer with too many losses, but everyone who understands Thai boxing realizes that fighting in Thailand no one remains undefeated. Many will agree that Ramon made his mark in the sport of kickboxing and Muay Thai. Known for his aggressive style and his skillful use of hands, he changed the landscape for foreign fighters in Thailand.
If you love the likes of Marloes Coenen and the UFC heavyweight contender Alistair Overeem, these men wouldn’t be standing toe to toe like they do without the Dutch fighter and trainer Ramon Dekkers. Recent news reported that the Muay Thai legend a passed away at age 43. During his active years, Dekkers was an 8 time world champion and one of the most notable Dutch Kick boxers in Thailand and that means the world.
Dekkers the early years
Born in 1969 in Holland, Ramon Dekkers became acquainted with martial arts at a very young age. At age 12, he was already doing boxing and judo. At the tender age of 19, he had 50 pro fights to his record and traveled for the first time in Thailand. His first trip to Thailand to fight for the title was an eye opener for him. It taught him how a Farang is treated, Farang a Thai term for foreign fighters in Muay Thai. He realized that it is really hard to get the decision against Thai born fighters when it hits the scorecards, he realized that as a Dutchman the Thai’s had a clear home stadium advantage One of the things that made Ramon Dekkers the legend that he is today is his punching power and combinations. Because of the fact that most Thai based fighters would prefer the unpadded portions of their striking arsenal (knees, kicks, elbows), Dekkers became a big draw as he has an advantage in terms of the punching skills that he and his Dutch trainers possessed.
One of the most notable rivals of Dekkers is Coban. In their first encounter, Dekkers was knocked out with a left hook. As for the rematch, Dekkers won the match in highlight worthy fashion as well. The third outing of their rivalry, Dekkers was defeated again but this rivalry was so loved by the fans that Coban and Dekkers had a fourth fight. Dekkers won the fourth and final fight evening his record against Coban. There were rumors that Coban had agreed to a no elbows rule because Dekkers had lost a few previous fights due to cuts.
What Dekkers proved to the world is that a fighter not coming directly from Thailand has a shot at greatness in Muay Thai. In fact after his career, the likes of Alistair Overeem emerged in the picture and became one of the best strikers in Pride and now in the UFC.
On February 27, 2012, Ramon Dekkers collapsed after feeling light headed. Medics attempted to resuscitate Dekkers. He died at age 43. Dekkers will be remembered as a Muay Thai legend and as a pioneer who changed the landscape of the sport. A one of a kind striker known for his heart, every fighter in Muay Thai and in MMA owes it to Ramon Dekkers.
May he rest in peace.