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“Smokin” Jo Nattawut Wants To Grow Muay Thai In U.S. Following ONE 167 Title Bid

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“Smokin” Jo Nattawut has his eyes set on the ONE Featherweight Muay Thai World Title at ONE 167 on Friday, June 7. But the rematch against Tawanchai PK Saenchai is more than the gold. Nattawut wants to continue to show the world how great the sport can be and help it grow across the globe.

“Everybody who is watching the [striking] fights in ONE, they love it. If it’s my fight, everybody enjoys it and likes my style, so that’s gonna help a lot [to grow the sport]. Muay Thai is growing here in Atlanta. It keeps growing every single month. Obviously, because of ONE Championship, it’s making it bigger. Everybody watches it, and then they train Muay Thai even more,” Nattawut detailed to ONE.

Jo Nattawut Has His Eyes on More Than Just Gold on June 7th

The decorated striker even believes that the sport can be the ultimate combat sport in the world within 10 years. The non-stop excitement has already elevated the sport to new heights within the past few years. The showdown with Tawanchai will be yet another high-profile showdown that will captivate audiences.

The Thai star now resides in the United States. Nattawut makes his home in the greater Atlanta, Georgia, area. He is looking to open a gym in the near future to allow prospective martial artists to get authentic Muay Thai training right in the heart of the Peach State.

“Atlanta is home. I live here. I have all my friends, my work, everything is here. This is home for me, so it’s easier for me to open a gym here. You have to build a good foundation, right? The whole system. If I own the gym, I already have an idea to create a full system. Everybody follows the system and the way we teach authentic Muay Thai,” the featherweight contender remarked.

Atlanta will get a taste of the elite Muay Thai world in the fall. In November, ONE will arrive at the State Farm Arena in Atlanta. ONE 170 will take place on Friday, November 8. The huge U.S. event has Nattawut excited about how it could impact the stateside Muay Thai community.

 “It’s going to make a huge impact, people getting to see it live. Of course, if it gets more views, more people will know about Muay Thai. Of course, then Muay Thai will keep growing. The future, the dream for everyone, is for it to be as big as boxing, as big as [MMA]. If we keep going like this, it’s going to get there,” Nattawut stated.

Although his title bid is nearing, Nattawut is hopeful he can appear on the ONE 170 card. It could be a title defense or a chance to rebound, but either way, he wants to give his American friends a chance to see him compete in person. ONE 167 and ONE 170 are making it a massive year for Nattawut and the opportunity to continue expanding the global footprint of the sport he has mastered.

“It would be fun to compete at the Atlanta event. It’s really for my friends here, too. They would get to watch me live at least one time. I’ve lived here for 10 years but never had a chance to fight at home,” Nattawut detailed.

ONE 167 airs live on Prime Video on Friday, June 7. The action begins at 8 p.m. ET/5 p.m. PT. The event is free for all Amazon Prime members based in the U.S. and Canada.

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Jeremy Brand is an experienced MMA writer and columnist. He is the founder of, and has represented the company with media credentials at many mixed martial arts fights. Jeremy is also a black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, training in BC, Canada.