Meet Alessandro Sara – Alex Petchrungruang

Alex is from Italy. He has been living at Petchrungruang Gym, under the guardianship and care of Kru Nu and his family, for 3 years already. He came to the camp as a 11 year old boy almost entirely encased in his own shell, very shy but incredibly sweet. He was in Thailand with his father after the tragic death of his mother and was just trying to find his way as a young boy.

In these three years he’s been raised with the Thai boys at the gym. He sleeps in a small room at the corner of the ring along with a few of the other boys and has become fluent in Thai. He speaks English quite well but over the years at the camp he’s come to prefer Thai for nearly all exchanges, sometimes acting as interpreter between the trainers and Italian visitors to the camp.

What’s truly remarkable about Alex is how he’s transitioned from that little kid in his shell to the young man he is on the precipus of becoming now. Alex had his first fight at Lumpinee the day before he turned 13 years old, making him at the time the youngest westerner ever to take the stage at the National Stadium. He has amassed over 50 fights and gained a confidence in the ring that is awe inspiring. The lanky little boy who was very shy has become a long-limbed kneeing machine, growing in height like a weed and fighting at a competitive 108 lbs at Lumpinee and Max Muay Thai. Alex’s confidence is expressed in his interaction with the other fighters, now taking a leadership role over the younger boys who are additions to the gym, but he retains his sweetness. And when you put a camera on him, the shyness comes out a bit as well.

We are excited to see what Alex has in store for the coming years. He’s growing so fast and his Muay Thai is becoming an expression of the young man he is. Chok dee to Alex.

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