After 57 years playing host to many of Bangkok’s most memorable fights, the legendary Lumphini Boxing Stadium closed its doors for the last time this weekend. Completed in December 1956 and run by the Thai army, the corrugated iron roofed ramshackle venue was seen as the heart and soul of Muay Thai to fighters from the world over. A modern and larger stadium will open under the same name but in a completely different location on Feb 11th. The last night was an intense one with two knockouts and quite a bit of blood spilled… These photos were all taken on that night.
A fighter listens to his coach’s advice between two rounds.
Coaches and supporters react to “their” fighter’s performance during a match
Fighters in the ring during a very powerful fight which caused spectators and gamblers alike to go wild
Gamblers gesture during round 3 of the heated battle. The bets are placed using hand-signals, very much like at a stock exchange.
A coach fits a traditional arm band (called a Prajioud) onto his fighter before a match
A fighter prays before entering the ring
Gamblers anxhiously watch a fight
A fighter grimaces with pain in the stadium doctor’s office after he was knocked out
A fighter waits for his turn to fight
A fighter practices his moves, shadowboxing before his bout
Gamblers react to the outcome of a fight
A fighter is tended to in the stadium doctor’s office, after a knockout
A fighter listens to his coach’s advice between two rounds
Gamblers react to a fight going against the odds.
A fighter spits out blood and is looked after by his team after a difficult fight.
A gambler reflects on the evening after the last fight.
The usually bustling back area of the stadium with the massage beds where the fighters are prepared for the fights is left deserted at the end of the night