Namkabuan whose real name is Naipure Sidjatheuk was born in the village of Nong Kee in the Buriram region (North-East). Naipure is the youngest of the family which has 8 children.
His older brother introduced him to the basics of Muay Thai, then introduced him to Master Pramote Haymook, the owner of the famous Nongkee Pahuyuth Gym, a camp which was located near the house of young Naipure.
Master Pramote Haymook trained Namkabuan as well as his big brother Namphon, the two fighters remained faithful to their camp until the end of their careers.
Later, when they began to fight regularly in Bangkok the two brothers finished their training in the famous Muang Surin camp.
Namkabuan had his first fight at 10 years old, a match he lost because he was not very well trained. Around the age of 13, he began to fight in the stadiums of Bangkok.
Namkabuan and his brother Namphon are among the legends of the “golden age” of Muay Thai in Thailand!
Namkabuan was a huge champion in the 90’s, he was the undisputed star of all Lumpinee aficionados because he set the stadium on fire with his breathtaking techniques. Namkabuan was a phenomenal technician who managed to defeat fighters far more powerful than himself with his exceptional technical control.
His science of the ring and his way of fighting earned him many nicknames, one of the most famous is undoubtedly “The Ring Genius” (The genius of the ring) but he was also called “Khun Khao Phanom Rung” (The stroke of knee of Phanom Rung) from the famous Phanom Rung temple in the Buriram region. And Muay Thai fans nicknamed him Djomkaynaa (The Plowman) because his specialty was leg grabbing techniques, he grabbed his opponent’s leg and lifted it to unbalance his opponent and knock him down. This technique was reminiscent of a farmer pushing his plow and plowing his field, Namkabuan was the peasant and his opponents’ legs were the handles of the plow.
Namkabuan won the Lumpinee belt in 130 lbs in the early 90’s and kept it for six years, he kept his trophy against many opponents, especially against great champions like Pairot Wor Wolapon and Neutharonee Tongraja. For lack of an opponent, he left his Lumpinee title vacant and won a WMC world champion belt in 130 lbs, a belt he also kept for several years.
His toughest fights were against puncher Wangchannoi Sor Palangchai and against Dutch terror Ramon Dekkers (RIP).
On October 30, 1990, in the stadium of Lumpinee, in a One Songchai organization, the young Namkabuan (17 years old) challenged the champion Wangchannoi (23 years old) who had beaten Namphon, Namkabuan’s brother, and had robbed him of his Lumpinee belt in 122 lbs.
Wangchannoi defeated Namkabuan in the 1st round in 33 seconds with a terrible left uppercut to the jaw. Following this dazzling victory, Muay Thai fans in Thailand nicknamed Wangchannoi “Aymat 33 Wee” (The dazzling punch in 33 seconds).
The two champions met for the rematch and after a fierce fight Wangchannoi defeated Namkabuan again but on points.
On July 13, 1997, still in an organization of the great promoter Songchai Ratanasuban, in Morocco, Namkabuan and Ramon Dekkers made a crazy match which ended with the victory in points of the Thai.
Namkabuan was a great champion who loved challenges, in 1996, in Bangkok, he had faced two French champions in the same match, Manu N’Tho for three rounds then, Eddy Saban for the last two rounds. The former star of the rings Dany Bill was in the corner of the French. The fight was very hard for the Thai but Namkabuan won this match on points!
During his long career, Namkabuan made 283 fights for 266 victories, 15 defeats and 2 draws, he often won very high purses of up to 250,000 baht.
Namkabuan beat the best champions of his generation such as Lamnamoon Sor Sumalee, Oley Kiat Oneway, Matee Jedeeptak (KO), Cherry Sor Wanich, Chatchai Phaiseethong, Robert Kaennorasing, Jomrak Lookprabat, Boonlai Sor Thanikul, Therdkiat Sittepak, Samkor Kietmontep, Sangtiennoi Sor Rungroj, Jongsanan Fairtex, Sakmongkol Sitchuchoke!
His big brother, Namphon who was four years older than Namkabuan, was also a huge champion, he didn’t have the same fighting style as his younger brother. Namphon was more of a durable boxer who advanced on his opponents by sending kicks and terrible low kicks. Namphon did a lot of tough fights, far too many, matches where he was often open in the face, so much so that Muay Thai fans had dubbed him “Khun Khao Nay Peuaiye” (The Knee Reconstruction). Because during his career, he had 72 stitches, moreover, Namphon had had a serious car accident which earned him additional stitches!
Namphon won the Lumpinee belt in 112 lbs and in 126 lbs, he met twice the legendary Samart Payakaroon (2 losses), twice the great Ramon Dekkers (1 victory, 1 loss), three times the formidable Jaroenthong Kietbanchong (1 victory, 1 defeat, 1 draw), twice the bull Neutharonee Tongraja (1 victory, 1 draw) and many other great champions like Orono Por Muang Ubon, Sangtiennoi Sor Rungroj, Cherry Sor Wanich, Phetdam Lukborai…
Namphon fought often in Europe, he had notably met Ramon Dekkers in Holland and Pascal Scalp in France. In Amsterdam, in 1990, for a world champion’s belt, Ramon Dekkers had beaten him on points. But the Thai had taken his revenge on the Dutch by beating him then in Bangkok. For beating the Batavian, Namphon had received a purse of 100,000 baht. At the time, Namphon won purses between 200,000 and 250,000 baht!
In Paris, in 1989, Namphon had faced the European champion Pascal Scalp, the Thai had won by technical knockout by breaking the shin of the French…
The two brothers after their careers each opened a restaurant in Nakhon Ratchassima in the northeast region, styles of restaurants very well known in Thailand which are called “Neua Yang Kaoli” (Korean barbecue) in which the specialty is grilled dishes from pork. The Namkabuan and Namphon restaurants are recognizable by their brand because they each put a logo on it with boxing gloves. Namkabuan Restaurant is located on Suebsiri Road in Nakhon Ratchassima and Namphon Restaurant on Changpeuak Road in Nakhon Ratchassima, these restaurants are open every day.
The legendary Namphon sadly passed away on September 19, 2016 at the age of 47 from a long lung disease…
BY SERGE TREFEU