Interview of Christophe MERTENS by Serge TREFEU (2008)
Serge TREFEU: Hello Christophe can you present for our readers?
Christophe MERTENS: I am 24 years old. Surroundings 35 fight and that made 4 years and half which I live in Asia
Today you live in Thailand?
I lived 2 years in Thailand. After I moved in Japan and I remained 2 years and half over there. And there I return to Thailand
In Japan did you often boxing?
I have made 5 fights in Japan. I fought 3 Japanese champions and there I fought boxing again the current champion of Japan, on April 20
In Thailand how many fights?
About 20 fights
You began the Thai Boxing at which age?
At 16 years in the Muay Thai Gym France in Paris. After I was in the Phoenix Gym in Paris with Hassan Gaye and Brice Hoarau
When you were in the Phoenix Gym, you training with which?
I training with all the boy of the gym, like Farid Villaume, Karim Saada…
How much do you have make fights in France?
About fifteen fight in class C (amateur). My first fight in professional, I have make in Kampuchea.
You did not have occasion to make the championships of France in class B (amateur) or have not?
Not, because it is necessary to remain a whole year in France and as I came to Thailand, I fought direct in professional…
Where did you boxing in Thailand?
I already fight twice in Radja Stadium with two wins. Also with stadium of Phuket and a little everywhere in provinces
You had boxing which name here?
A young boy who goes up which calls Luangnitnoi and also Yoksaksit …
In which category you fight?
I fight in Thailand and in Japan in 140 lbs (66 kg)
How did you discover the Thai Boxing?
I looked at the fight of Sari (world champion) and Nikiema (world champion) on TV Canal + and I adored continuation the Muay Thai!
You were in a gym and you pushed the door to see?
I had already been to see front but I had not hung so much. But when I saw the fights on TV Canal +, I liked much!
You remember your first fight?
Yes of course. It was in the little stadium of Japy in Paris. It was for the championship France Island. There were two fights by day. I gained both matches at the points…
You have which style of boxing?
I am rather fimeuu (technician)
When you came to Thailand, you went in which gym?
Since I came to Thailand and to Japan, I never really had somebody behind me. I train myself a little all alone. To be posed in a gym in Thailand this is not so easy that. Before Thai takes care of you, there are necessary to remain several years and still you are not even sure…
Did you often come in Jocky Gym?
Yes. I also went to the university to Bangkok. And over there I went in another gym in Bangna. In Jocky, I went there regularly during a year. They learned me from few thing but they really did not prepare me for fight…
You did not fight for the fight of Jocky?
I already boxing for Somat (owner of Jocky), the promising one of the gym, in Kampuchea and Phuket
You did not training other gym’s in Thailand?
Not, I feel well with Jocky, it is like a family. When I train, Pipa (trainer as a chief) prepared me well for my fight with Radja stadium and I gained
Why were you installed so a long time in Japan?
Already I stay interested to discover the Japanese culture. Then, I thought that was easier to have a sponsor because boxing feet and fists are well developed over there. But of makes when you are not Japanese, you cannot have same things them. But if you are serious, to fight there is no problem. On the other hand is harder of to integrate when Thailand, it does not have there foreign over there…
On is the level of the profit in Japan is better paid when Thailand?
Not too makes some, the profit is between 700 and 1000 Euros and the cost of living in Japan is very high. In Thailand the cost of living is very low…
You prefer fight in Japan or in Thailand?
I prefer thousand times fighting in Thailand, already in Japan, it is does not have the Ram Muay. With the supporters there is no environment. When you boxing in Radja, that has anything to see
The Muay Thai practised in Japan is different from that in Thailand?
The Muay Thai, they call “kick boxing” but they add the blows of elbows and blows of knees. But for the clinch at the end of three seconds, they stop, so never there are clinch. Then you boxing, there is no music and there is not really encouragement
Does the culture Thai interest you?
Yes, me I am Buddhist practitioner and the culture Thai that me interests. I am as at home here
You usually speak Thai?
Yes, I can read too but to write is a little more difficult
You know the culture Thai tattooing that interest you?
Interests me but I would not do it because it is necessary to respect the thing with 100%. To make as many people who will not respect to 100% that me do not interest…
You know much French boxers?
Yes, I know many people in France. As the majority of the high level fighters come boxing to Thailand, I meeting often here
Are you already boxing for the King’s Birthday in Bangkok?
In Thailand which is your promoter?
There are several of them. Before when I stays in Japan my gym worked with the Chuwattana gym of Bangkok. Their promoter called Amnoï. Today in Jocky it will be surely Somat but I would boxing with that which will make me fighting …
Which is your ambition in Thailand, to fight names and to gain a belt a stadium?
To make a belt is already necessary to have the chance that one you it pro. Accesses to meet known names, to make beautiful fight…
Currently which is N° 1 in your category?
In Lumpinee is Yodseanklai. In Radja is Chaowalit which is here in Jocky Gym
Yodseanklai Would you like to fight?
Yes but not now. It is necessary that I still do many fights before…
Thank you very much and Chook Dee for your fights?
Thank you with you
Birth date: 17/06/1983
Weights: 66 kg
Number of fight: 35 fights. 20 wins. 3 draws. 8 wins by K.O.
Title: French Champion amateur C 2001. French Champion France Island. Winner of the Kampuchean Champion Phul Phally in S1 World Championship 2006