Singtongnoi Por Telakun, 38, of Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand is known for his success not only as a Muay Thai world champion but also as a cancer survivor. Recently, the Thai ONE Super Series fighter talked about the obstacles he has overcome.
Having 300 professional bouts under his belt, Singtongnoi has beaten some of Thailand’s biggest Muay Thai superstars. Things took a turn for the worse when his Muay Thai career came to an end and he had to go back to selling goat milk to make ends meet.
Fortunately, Singtongnoi received an offer to join the Evolve MMA in Singapore as an instructor, and since then, he had been able to support his family. Just when things started to look promising in his life, a devastating news came his way, revealing that he was diagnosed with stage three cancer.
“I was stunned and I couldn’t believe it,” Singtongnoi said. “I started to cry. I was in disbelief. I thought I was going to die for sure.”
“The cancerous tumor was about two centimeters long,” the Thai martial artist explained. “It went through my whole nasal cavity, all the way down to the lymph nodes in my neck.”
Singtongnoi had to undergo several medical procedures in Singapore to treat his severe condition. He recalled, “After undergoing the radiation therapy and chemotherapy, my throat hurt and I had burns from the radiation all over my neck. It was hard for me to walk and all I wanted to do was throw up.”
With his teammates, friends and family by his side, Singtongnoi persevered through all the bleak thoughts and negative feelings with every fiber of his being. Receiving the best treatment possible, it all paid off months later when the doctor told him that he is cancer-free.
“I was ecstatic,” Singtongnoi recollected. “I could once again see a bright future for myself and my family.”
Through this battle against cancer, Singtongnoi learned that life is valuable and should not be taken for granted. He shared, “It’s important to love yourself and take care of your loved ones, as you don’t know when you’ll die.”
After overcoming the life-threatening illness, Muay Thai was out of the question going forward for Singtongnoi. However, he valued his second shot at life, awakening his willpower to not only make a full physical recovery but to get back to the sport that he loved.
When Singtongnoi made his ONE Super Series debut at “ONE: Unstoppable Dreams” in Singapore on May 18, 2018, he authored a spectacular performance to the delight of the crowd, outclassing World Boxing Council Muay Thai Super Bantamweight World Champion Joseph Lasiri. Despite the long layoff, the Thai fighter appeared that he did not miss a beat, dropping his Italian opponent twice in the first round and consistently connecting his signature sharp combinations.
In the second round, Singtongnoi unleashed a torrent of impactful strikes, coercing the referee to step in and call a halt to the contest. The Thai kickboxer returns to the ONE Super Series ring on the undercard of “ONE: Kingdom of Heroes” in Bangkok, Thailand on October 6, 2018 squaring off with Masahide Kudo of Japan.
Get to know more about Singtongnoi here: